Archive for the ‘The Rest’ Category

First Day of School 2014

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

I think I forgot to do the questions last year. I’m not even sure I took pictures of Caroline’s first day – I can’t find the post. But this year was a big year for both kids. Caroline started taking a BUS to a big school EVERY DAY and Evan started FULL DAY kindergarten so I took the time to look up the questions from 2 years ago and did it again. Plus Caroline REALLY wanted me to ask her what her favorite food was for some reason.

The first couple of days have been amazing for them and crazy stressful for me. Our school district buses everyone and encourages us to take advantage of the buses. Both schools (Caroline is at the special pre-K-only building, Evan’s at the magnet elementary school a few miles away) have very limited parking and no drop-off area for parents, just buses. I WANT the kids to take the bus. But the bus system is, to put it nicely, crap. The bus numbers we were given – the official ones, the ones printed on their tags – are not ACTUALLY their bus numbers. No one is actually sure why. Every bus has been late. Caroline’s morning bus was the least late, only 5 minutes. Evan’s afternoon bus was 45 minutes late the first day and 75 MINUTES LATE the second day. He was somehow put on the wrong bus on the wrong route and then taken back to the school and…you know what? I don’t want to talk about it. It was crappy. I was pissed. But the school handled it, he made it home no worse for the wear.

Both kids love their teachers, both kids love their uniforms, both kids love their new backpacks, both kids had zero tears or worries about leaving me. I am completely amazed I grew 2 little people who are so confident and outgoing and brave. I am also REALLY happy I have one little person at home who still needs me constantly so I don’t have time to be too depressed about the big kids. BIG KIDS. LOOK AT HOW BIG THEY ARE.

evan first day web size-2

evan first day web size-4

evan first day web size-7

evan first day web size-8

 



evan first day web size-9

evan first day web size-10

evan first day web size-12

evan first day web size-13

evan first day web size-15

evan first day web size-16

evan first day web size-17

evan first day graphic

caroline first day web size

caroline first day web size-3

caroline first day web size-4

caroline first day web size-6

caroline first day web size-11

caroline first day web size-12

caroline first day web size-18

caroline first day web size-14

caroline first day web size-15

caroline first day web size-16

caroline first day web size-19

This is her face when she saw her bus coming up the street.

caroline first day web size-8

caroline first day graphic

Related posts:

Sick baby update
My Week(86) in iPhone Photos
Big Girls Don't Cry?

Life With 3: Update 1

Friday, August 22nd, 2014

It is 11:25 am and I am watching The Price is Right, which means life is really good right now. That’s how I judge my level of happiness: am I able to be home, eating a sandwich, between the hours of 11 and 12 so I can watch Drew Carey give away cars? Yes? Success!!

Tomorrow Linc will be 1 month old, and I’ll start doing monthday updates again. I have big plans to do a same-spot monthly photo like I did with Caroline’s tutu, but I am TERRIBLE at following through with stuff like that so we’ll see.

It turns out the hardest part of having three kids isn’t the third kid – it’s the first two. I thought I had done a really good job teaching Evan and Caroline to play on their own without needing me to intervene or referee much. But in reality I just didn’t realize how often I had to step in until I was stuck on the couch under a sleeping or nursing baby and couldn’t break up their squabbles. There has been a LOT more yelling than I like (and I’m not even strictly anti-yelling) just because I CAN’T walk into the other room and deal with them calmly. Caroline has started shouting “Moooooom Evan is TORTURING ME again!” and Evan shouts “DON’T COME UP HERE!” and then I have to stomp up the stairs while they both shout “NOOOOOO! We’ll be good! We promise!!!!” It’s fairly exhausting just to listen to them all day, plus the stomping is really rough on my knees.

Luckily, I only have everyone home for one more week before school starts. School itself is going to be a challenge – Evan’s bus comes REALLY early and I’m kind of nervous about how he’ll behave during a long ride to school – but the quiet I’m going to get while both big kids are gone is going to be life-changing. I can start blogging again. I can edit photos. I can finish knitting one of the 5 baby hats I’ve started but not finished. I can start taking pictures for other people so I can start saving up for the new lens I want.

And I can do ALL that stuff because Linc is a super easy baby. I have absolutely NO delusions this has anything to do with me or my parenting whatsoever. It’s luck. Just luck. Maybe there’s a little truth to the idea that because I’m not tense and nervous and stressed the baby isn’t tense and nervous and stressed, but that’s anecdotal at best. I know plenty of people whose second or third baby was WAY more high-needs than the first one. I just got an easy one this time, for which I am unbelievably thankful. With E gone almost all the time I would be seriously, SERIOUSLY losing my mind if I had an inconsolable, colicky baby.

The day my mom left me alone with all 3 kids I looked around and realized my house was clean and organized, and if I could just MAINTAIN that current level I could avoid a disaster. I’ve been doing really well – right now there’s only one load of laundry not put away and all the dishes are in the dishwasher – but I’ve given up on the kids’ room. Until they go to school and I can spend a good 3+ hours in there purging it’s hopeless. Luckily the rest of the house is still in good shape, so I can just shut their door and ignore it. I’m also ALMOST done with Linc’s nursery – I still haven’t ordered the crib and I need my husband to build me a shelf – and I’m really excited to share it.

Now I have a very important episode of House Hunters: Where Are They Now? to watch while I make a grocery list and a meal plan and enjoy this slightly annoying update while I can. I feel like the next one (after the 6 am wake ups and lunch packing and school drama) will be…much less smug.

 

Related posts:

39 Weeks, 5 Days
Misery, thy name is teething
Dance Mom

6 Totally Reasonable Tips For Road Tripping With A Newborn

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

1. Buy the right car seat.
There are no actual guidelines for what constitutes “right”, so be sure to read lots and lots and lots of reviews on Amazon. 200 at least. And don’t bother reading the 197 positive 5 star reviews – sort by 1 star and be sure to take VERY SERIOUSLY the three people who HATED that particular seat because their baby got stung by a bee while sitting in it. What kind of MONSTER doesn’t buy a bee-repelling car seat? Also take into consideration what color your baby’s eyes will be and order a seat in a color that really makes them pop. Since you need a car seat to bring your infant home from the hospital and cannot actually SEE your baby’s eyes before it is born, you will definitely buy the wrong seat. Wow, you didn’t even make it to the end of the first tip. You should probably stay home.

2. Pack lots of snacks.
You will have to stop a lot of times to feed your newborn, because newborns are lazy and refuse to just feed themselves pretzels and Twizzlers like everyone else does on road trips. But don’t expect you will actually get to eat or drink ANYTHING when you stop. This is not your time, this is BABY’S TIME. It doesn’t really matter what kinds of snacks you bring, since you’ll be blindly shoving it into your mouth while keeping your eyes on the road. I recommend crunchy things – the sound of yourself chewing helps drown out the screaming from bee stings.

3. Avoid traffic.
Since I am sure usually you enjoy sitting through construction, accidents and other acts of God you have no control over, actively avoid those things when you have a newborn traveling with you. If you cannot see into the future and/or predict traffic slow downs, invest in a psychic or perhaps a hoverjet.

4. Wear your baby.
OBVIOUSLY not while you’re driving, but at some point you will need to pee. It is easier to do so when you don’t have to also hold a baby with your arms and hands. Just like the car seat, it is important that you buy the RIGHT baby carrying device. Check out the lively world of online parenting message boards, which are not at all full of people screaming at each other over which kind of baby carrier is the best. Remember, a $600 organic hand woven sling is clearly superior to the kind you can just borrow from a friend, because the more something costs the more babies like it. This is why all babies prefer those wooden black and white educational toys to the car keys you just dropped in the parking lot.

5. Bring help.
Consider hiring the following people: nanny, wet nurse, car seat installer, personal chef, therapist, barista, and driver. Since bring ALL those people would require a much larger car than you probably own, try to find help who can multitask – there’s no reason someone can’t make you a latte while nursing your baby. If you have to bring just ONE person, your spouse will be fine. I guess. Can they make coffee?

6. Order the correct baby.
Did you get one of those newborns that hates riding in the car? An unreasonable baby that doesn’t sleep in 4+ hour chunks right from the beginning? Does your infant take hours to eat instead of efficiently chugging their milk/formula? Unexplained screaming? Poopsplosions? Colic? Clearly your baby is defective. Check your warranty paperwork to find out where to get your baby repaired. If you cannot locate your paperwork (people often seem to misplace it) send me $500 and I can get the Department of Perfect Children to mail you another copy. It’s no problem, happy to help.

Now you are ready for your road trip! It should be a very fun and relaxing activity, with lots of good opportunities to take and share beautiful Instagram photos of yourself in your adorable yet casual driving clothes standing on the beach or in front of a quaint farm stand or local landmarks. Remember to take at least one where you breastfeed in a field while staring peacefully into the distance, to prove you are a good mother. Good luck to you and your baby!

Related posts:

Reasons I Might Not Be A Great Mother
Full House
Scientific Proof Cats Are The Devil's Minions

Introducing: Baby Lincoln!

Monday, July 28th, 2014

Lincoln Scott Davis
July 23, 2014
12:52 am
9 lbs, 21.5 inches

annoucement

(Doesn’t that baby look like the baby model that came with the announcement? THAT’S MY ACTUAL BABY.)

Birth story disclaimer: It’s a birth story, read at your own risk. Also looooong.

I made it 6 days past my due date with my “oh you’ll definitely go early” baby, which was the longest 6 days of my life. It was actually more like the longest 3 weeks of my life, since I was thinking I was about to pop ANY SECOND since I hit 38 weeks. Literally every time I left the house I planned in my head what I would do when (not if) my water broke. I had started psyching myself up for having a baby in the car or in my bathroom or at Target because obviously once my water broke the baby would basically fall out, right? I mean, I was huge. There was a ton of water. It was my 3rd baby and things are supposed to go faster.

NOT QUITE. I had an induction scheduled and then canceled because it was “elective” and the maternity floor was too full. Luckily E’s schedule was pushed back a few days (again) so I wasn’t AS panicked but I was still HUGELY PREGNANT. People who are hugely pregnant don’t like to be told they have to remain hugely pregnant indefinitely.

But I did get the one thing I wanted: to experience my water breaking spontaneously, like in a movie. Oh no, my water broke! Must be time to head to the hospital! Look at that adorable little puddle!

LIES! All lies. I don’t recommend it.

On Tuesday morning I woke up to a gush and thought “Oh! So that’s what that feels like!” And then I sat up and water poured out of me like a river and thought “Oh man, this is kind of unpleasant.” And then I shoved the towel I was keeping next to the bed between my legs and tried to waddle to the bathroom, still leaking everywhere but now with contractions on top of it and thought “Nope nope nope nope”. I ended up using every spare towel we had to half-heartedly clean up fluid before taking a shower and just hoping most of it was done draining out. (It wasn’t. I went to the hospital with a hand towel in my pants. I threw it away.) If it had happened in public you wouldn’t be reading this right now because I would have willed the earth to open up and swallow me whole.

Once we got to the hospital nothing happened. I had a non-stress test scheduled for that morning anyway, so they put me on the monitors. I should have stayed home longer so I could eat and walk around and lie on my couch, but again, I was pretty much expecting the baby to FALL OUT so when we got there and I was at 2 cm I was both shocked and disappointed. Since my water was broken (they didn’t even check, the doctor said “Yeah, you had so much water if you said it broke I BELIEVE YOU”) they did want to keep me though. so I tried to get comfortable and just enjoy the last few hours with my inside baby.

birth 1

It was pretty boring. E and I played cribbage, just like we did when I was in labor with Evan. He beat me every time, just like when I was in labor with Evan. By the afternoon I was still mostly just sitting there, contracting but not super painfully, and they asked if I wanted to start pitocin. I told them that was fine but I would need the matching epidural. The very nice anesthesiologist came and stuck me with needles and then the magic epidural made me feel totally drunk and I was MUCH HAPPIER. It was exactly the right amount of numb, where I can move my legs and feet but feel no pain. I think I updated Facebook and made a bunch of jokes. It’s sort of a blur.

birth 2

For a while (OMINOUS DUM-DUM-DUM). Now that baby didn’t have a swimming pool to play in, he started playing with the cord instead and every couple of contractions the monitor would register a deceleration in his heart rate. A few times it dipped really low and I got a rush of nurses in to rearrange me and ask me to roll on one side or another. It was sort of stressful on everyone and I started to get pretty worried I’d end up with an emergency c-section, although when I mentioned that to my nurse she said I wasn’t even allowed to THINK that word.

They eventually found a spot on my right side where the baby’s heart was happy but it meant that my epi started to wear off on the left. A lady from anesthesiology came and hung a new bottle and gave me a bump, but warned us lying on one side meant the other side might always get less medicine. My left side hurt more. And more. And more. AND THEN A LOT REALLY A LOT IT REALLY REALLY HURT. Then the baby’s heart rate deceled again and they made me get up on my knees and hang over the bed and I realized I wasn’t numb AT ALL on the left and it was wearing off on the right and my epidural had officially failed and OMG HOW DO PEOPLE EVEN DO THIS WITHOUT MEDS?!?!?!

No, for real, it sucked. Snaps for anyone who does even 5 minutes of natural/pitocin labor.

E fed me a delicious Italian ice to distract me, but when I started to actually cry during a contraction my nurse decided to page anesthesiology again. The first nice doctor who put the epi in came up to check on it. He ripped all the tape off my back to check the needle and was getting ready to give me another bump when I heard him say “The pump isn’t on.”

YOU GUYS. THEY TURNED OFF MY EPIDURAL. The woman who hung up the new bottle NEVER TURNED IT ON, so I hadn’t had any meds in HOURS. And my pitocin was at a 16 (on a scale of 2 being “meh” and 20 being “WARNING: BABY MAY SHOOT OUT LIKE A CANON BALL”). They turned the pump back on. Literally 5 minutes later I was fine again.

I have no sense of time from when the epidural stopped working until I started thinking “Hey, there’s that pushy-feeling! I should get the nurse!” but it was probably around 11:30 pm when the doctor came in to check me. Unfortunately, my giant baby refused to move down into my pelvis AT ALL, so I was at -1 and only 9cm.  It looked like I was still HOURS away from delivering.

Not that much later I was still feeling REALLY REALLY PUSHY. It also sort of hurt and I could feeling the burning ring-of-fire thing people describe so I told the nurse again I was probably about to have a baby. She called the doctor back to check again…and again I was at -1 and not fully dialated. I was the laboring woman who cried wolf, but no matter WHAT the doctor said I know what pushing feels like. I KNOW. So when I got the pushy feeling I might have pushed a little.

Me to nurse: It still feels like I should push.
Nurse: Don’t push yet.
Me to nurse (totally pushing): Ok, I won’t. But it really feels like I want to.
Nurse: If you’re not fully dialated your cervix can get all swollen and labor can be harder.
Me to nurse: Right, of course, I know. I’m not pushing. (MORE PUSHING)

Literally FIVE MINUTES after the doctor said I was at -1 I grabbed my nurse and said very seriously “LOOK, I’M ABOUT TO HAVE THIS BABY. FOR REAL. CHECK ME.” So she called the doctor back.

Guess who was right? I went from a -1 to a +3 in less than 5 minutes. My secret pushing worked (or, you know, just like my other 2 births when I get to the end babies come flying out of me). Luckily my doctor was aware of my short pushing history and everyone moved fast.

Then everyone tried to tell me how to push and I ignored them because y’all, I got this part. Four pushes later I had a baby. Then E said “IT’S A BOY” and my only response was “…..REALLY?!” Then they gave me my baby boy and I was like “Of course you’re a boy, I knew that. I know you!”

I really love that part at the end when you get a baby.

birth 3

birth 4

And now I’m going to brag a little bit about maybe the weirdest thing anyone has ever bragged about – they took the baby to weigh him and said “Whoa, NINE POUNDS” and then the doctor (assistant doctor? midwife in training? Whatever, the chick that caught my baby under my doctor’s supervision) said “You didn’t tear at all! No stitches!” I’m pretty proud of my no stitches. I got up to pee like 10 minutes after I gave birth and it didn’t hurt.

E went and got the kids and my mom in the morning so they could meet their new brother. They were both excited…for about 2 minutes. Evan got bored because he didn’t do anything and Caroline just wanted to be the center of attention. She did a lot of dancing.

birth 5

birth 6

birth 7

birth 8

birth 9 birth 10

The next day I entertained myself by taking pictures until we got to go home. For a minute.

birth 11

birth 12 birth 13 birth 14

birth 15

birth 16

birth 17

birth 18

birth 19

birth 20

birth 21

birth 22

birth 23

birth 24

birth 25

birth 26 birth 27 birth 28

birth 29

Just like his brother, Baby Linc ended up a little bit jaundiced. I dragged him all over creation trying to get blood work done on Saturday only to end up back in the hospital overnight. I’m not going to lie, that really sucked. I had a bad night staring at my baby under the lights (he loved them) and ended up asking the nursery to watch him so I could get a little sleep. It’s easier to mentally beat myself up for not doing MORE to force my newborn to eat and poop when I’m not quite so tired.

birth 30

birth 31

birth 32

birth 33

But his numbers came up fast and now we’re home for good (fingers crossed).

And that is the LONGEST POST I’VE WRITTEN IN YEARS. If you finished it I probably owe you $14 and a drink for the time it took out of your life. Seriously, I can’t even bring myself to read it again for typos. But I had a baby 6 days ago so my brain is fried anyway. TOTALLY worth it.

Related posts:

The World's Worst Husband
Wednesday Walks
Wordless Wednesday: Baby's First Bath Edition

Waiting, Impatiently

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

It is 8:32 pm on July 14th. I am 39 weeks and 5 days pregnant, which is 5 days more pregnant than I ever was with Caroline and 5 days less pregnant than I ever was with Evan. That’s a nice balance. Good symmetry. Seems like the perfect time to have a baby.

Unfortunately, my baby does not seem to agree.

I’m not technically overdue yet (TOMORROW), so I know the complaining about STILL being pregnant is annoying. Plenty of people have been much, much more pregnant and I could end up being one of them. (I REALLY REALLY HOPE NOT.) But unfortunately I let myself think “Oh, I am totally having this baby early!”

It’s not entirely my fault. My doctors all said I was in danger of early labor because of my high fluid levels. I’ve had tons more Braxton-Hicks contractions than with any other baby. This baby has been measuring big for two months and I basically LIVE at the hospital between non-stress tests and scans and regular appointments. My children can literally walk into the ER entrance and get themselves to the maternity ward.

But I should not have gotten my hopes up. People warned me. I just did not listen.

WHY DIDN’T I LISTEN????

 

I swear if it was ONLY my comfort (or uncomfort) level that I was worried about, I wouldn’t mind waiting a little longer to meet my baby. I never went through this end part with Caroline (I was induced unexpectedly after super surprise pre-eclampsia) so I would probably still be anxious, but I would be OK.

Unfortunately, due to E’s work schedule, I’m on a deadline. If I go a week overdue, he won’t be here for the birth. The moment where we finally find out together if baby #3 is a boy or a girl just…won’t happen. I’ll have to send an email he probably won’t get or a Red Cross message that at least 3 other people will read before him or just wait until he’s home again. He won’t be here to hold my hand or cut the cord or change a single diaper. I won’t be able to scream “WHY DID YOU DO THIS TO ME?!?!” as I push out a gigantic baby.

I don’t want this to sound TOO dramatic – he’s not going to be gone for months or years. His current work schedule is crazy and unpredictable but it’s not a deployment. He might be on a submarine under the ocean but he won’t be At Sea for more than a couple weeks at a time. The baby certainly won’t remember that he missed the birth but I know E will be so, so sad about it I won’t even be able to give him a hard time for “abandoning me”. I’m still not exactly EXCITED about it.

It would sort of suck to be in the room with just my nurses and the doctor. My mom – who’s here to watch the kids, in theory – has said she’ll fill in and I have friends who would take the kids if I really needed them to, but I’m not thrilled with that idea either. Mom watching the kids makes me being in the hospital much more relaxing. I don’t have to worry about whether or not they’re being terrors, she has to deal with it and love them because they’re her grandkids. Leaving them with someone else would mean lots of worrying instead of soaking up brand-new baby time.

We knew this was a possibility. As much as we tried to plan this baby around the Navy’s schedule, the testing that E’s doing now was supposed to be done in December. The command actually said “Plan your vacations for July and August, since that’s when we’ll be around”. Every time it got pushed back I thought “Ugh, this could be inconvenient” but until literally THIS WEEK I refused to consider E really truly not being here. Right now things are just slightly difficult – he’s not reachable by phone anymore so I have to call some office and they have to get a guy to run down to the pier and find him and then he has to get someone to cover for him and drive back up here to the hospital. But his boat is still tied to the dock, which is good!

I have a non-stress test in the morning (9 am, so possibly as you are reading this) followed by a regular appointment where I’m going to strongly suggest I am interested in them getting the baby the hell out ASAP. I feel like I’m breaking a bunch of birthing rules by even considering an elective induction. Admitting that on any of the pregnancy message boards will get you called a zillion things, none of which sound like “good mother”. But this isn’t my first time around the baby block and I did have a good experience with my last induction. Plus I have tried every single other possible thing to make labor happen on it’s own*** and nothing is working.

Why couldn’t this baby just COOPERATE, YOU GUYS?

Please send me lots of outside baby thoughts and keep your fingers crossed I’m so close tomorrow the doctor says I’m basically IN labor already and that my husband’s boat stays just broken enough that they stay in port and he’s right there with me when we find out if our Team Green baby is a boy or a girl. And so I can yell “WHY DID YOU DO THIS TO ME?!” as I push out what is probably a truly enormous baby.

I’m scheduling this to post at 7 am on Tuesday. Let’s hope that right now I’m already in the hospital having my baby and posting boring Instagrams of my IV all over social media (soon to be followed by adorable baby pics!)


*** The only things I haven’t tried are castor oil and black/blue cohosh. I’m not sure I can handle the side effects of castor oil and even Googling cohosh makes the internet freak the hell out about safety. But if my OB says “Sorry, one more week before we’ll talk about induction” I see a castor oil lemonade in my future.

Related posts:

Define Inappropriate
Happy Thanksgiving!
All I wanted for Christmas...
Clickin' Moms
Wayfair Homemakers
Get Adobe Flash player