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Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Sick

This is a whining post, I'm not even going to pretend it's not.

We're sick.

I hate it.

I've reached the point where I forget what it feels like not to be sick, and am sure that I will never feel healthy again.

The baby is sick and just wants to be held upright

I want nothing more to do than sleep with my head propped up

But then there are these other kids too, and they seem to be feeling a little bit better. It makes me both happy and jealous all at the same time.

Plus they are far more demanding when they are feeling well, and I'm not really in a meeting demands sort of mood.

They're also just stuffy enough that they can't hear anything, that is lots of fun.

This is where I whine that I wish moms had sick days, and I could just take a day off from taking care of 4 sick kids.

I could be thankful that it's still 2 weeks before Christmas, so at least we'll be healthy by then. Except for we don't have a tree, nothing is decorated, there is still shopping and gift making to do. At this rate I might be ready for Christmas by New Years Day...maybe.

Tomorrow I'll pull myself together, maybe clear a spot in the middle of the toys to put a tree when we get around to it, but today I'm just going to whine and go eat some soup

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Days 3, 4, and 5

I meant to update this everyday, but when has that ever worked well for me?

Really though, there hasn't been much to update on. She's still doing surprisingly well.

We had her post op appointment on Thursday and her Dr said everything looks great. It takes about 6 weeks post op to see what her final alignment will look like, but so far so good. I think her eye looks a lot straighter, but it's hard to tell.

We're still patching just for the next 3 weeks and then we're done! At least until our next visit in February/March. We'll see what she says then. It will be nice to have a little patching break though during the busy holiday stuff.

It's still red, that could last 6-8 weeks, but it hasn't spread to the rest of her eye at all, and already seems to be not *quite* so bright. We'll see how long it sticks around.

Crazy how it's only been a few months, but I already think she looks weird without her glasses on.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Day 2

Definitely more emotional today, I think yesterday she had so much going on she was too excited to sit still, today just about everything made her just a little bit more sad (or sassy) than usual.

Her eye is a lot more red today, but it's still just the corner of her eye, so it's not *that* noticeable. She is still acting like nothing happened, no complaining, no rubbing, I'm not sure she could even tell me which eye it was if I asked her.

Doing great with the drops too, she acts like she doesn't want me to do it for a second, then laughs and tilts her head up so I can put them in.

Tomorrow is our post op appointment with her Dr (she keeps yelling "I love Dr Hanna!"when I tell her we are going there tomorrow), so hopefully she is pleased with how it looks and maybe we won't even have to patch anymore!

hard to get her to stand still for a picture these days, but you can see how it's just the corner
 And Noah and Maddie were buddies today, so I couldn't leave them out! She loved sitting on his lap and talking to him and Nathan this afternoon


Surgery Day

Today was Elise's eye surgery, she remembers so little about the day already, that I wanted to make sure to document it since it's probable that she'll have another one down the road. This will help us remember what it was like the first time around, plus I know some people are just curious.

I'll be posting pictures of her eye so I can remember just how long it takes to go from scary looking to normal again. If this bothers you, close the page now, and maybe avoid reading the blog for the next couple of weeks. *I* don't think it's that gross or graphic, and the pictures posted in this post don't show more than a little pink in the corner, but it's definitely more red than the picture shows and future pictures may show that. It's definitely a little unnerving to look at in person.

Monday we had her pre op appointment, her Dr decided that patching was going pretty well, and for now instead of operating on both eyes, she was just going to do the left (the one we see turn in) and see how much that helped. She may need to go back and adjust the right eye eventually too. We also talked about the left vertical muscle being a little tight as well and how that could be another possibility for a future surgery, but she's leaving it be for now.

The day before surgery

Terrible picture, but trying to catch the eye turn for comparison later
 We talked a bit about the surgery beforehand, just to sort of prepare her for what was coming. When I got to the part about anesthesia, and told her they would give her some medicine to help her fall asleep, her response was "Yes! I get to have medicine like daddy! (Anthony had Advil for a headache earlier in the week) I'm so excited!"

She's not your average almost 3 year old.

So today was the day, she was just as excited this morning getting ready to go, she was allowed to bring 1 stuffed animal back with her, so she chose a stuffed Tigger that she's been playing with all week. She was pleasantly surprised when we got there and her scrubs had tigers all over them, just like Tigger! (she keeps correcting us and calling him Tiger. I think she thinks we are just not saying it right)

We arrived at about 9:10, and were pretty quickly taken back to an exam room to start getting ready. The next hour and a half we were kept pretty busy between weight, height and head measurements, blood pressure and pulse ox, eye and ear checks, listening to her breathing, talking with various nurses, anesthesiology (several times since the first papers we looked through all said "bilateral" and hadn't been changed to just the left eye yet), family life came back and talked to Elise about what would happen and she got to pick out her own scrub caps, practice breathing through the mask and pick out what scent she wanted inside of her mask (she chose "pink"). Anthony brought some studying to do during all of the wait time, since we were sitting around FOREVER doing nothing before his ankle surgery, but there really was never more than 5 minutes before the next person came in to see us.

Tiger pajamas!


At about 10:50, her Dr came in and talked to her (and us) for a little bit, then Elise gave us hugged and kisses and walked down the hall with the nurse. Even though we knew there were almost no complications with the surgery, and it wasn't really something we were "worried" about, there is still something pretty heart wrenching about watching your 2 year old walk away in scrubs for surgery.

We headed out to the waiting area, Anthony went to go get some lunch, and by the time he came back and had eaten about half of his food (he eats fast too!)  we were being paged to come talk to the Dr! She told me everything went exactly as planned, that Elise had done very well, talked a bit about the vertical muscle and how she's still hoping it will adjust on it's own, but she's keeping a close eye on it and there is a good chance we'll have another surgery later to adjust that one too. Explained what she might be feeling for the next couple of days (tired, irritable, trying to rub her eye etc) and about her antibiotic drops.

About 5 minutes later I got to go back to be with Elise, babies are not allowed in the level 1 recovery, so Anthony stayed in the waiting room with Maddie until we moved to level 2. She was awake already, or at least starting to wake up when I came back. A nurse was rocking her while she cried, so I took over. It took about 10 minutes before it seemed like she really knew what was going on, and she really wanted that IV out! As soon as the nurse brought up getting a cup of juice she stopped crying and said "yes". She snuggled with her sippy cup of Gatorade on my lap for maybe 10 more minutes and they got us ready to move to level 2.

As soon as Anthony and Maddie joined us in the level 2 recovery area, Elise requested that Daddy hold her. She loves us both, but she really has become a Daddies girl, even more since Maddie was born. Maddie had fallen asleep, so it was nice and quiet in the room and we just rocked with the lights off. We could hear one little boy who was not waking up well screaming "I want to go home!" over and over, I'm pretty confident if it had been Nathan or Noah there, we would have had a similar experience.
snuggling with Daddy

About 30 minutes later, we signed our discharge papers, got her dressed, and headed out! Anthony carried her while she held on to her sippy cup and the little baby doll I got her for being such a big girl through everything. Anthony grabbed a princess sticker from the front desk on our way out since he promised her she could have one when we first arrived. The rest of the day she told anyone who would listen that her daddy got her a princess sticker.

She had done so well so far, but it was the rest of the day that really surprised me. They told us that she would probably sleep for the rest of the day, and not want to open her eye, and to not expect her to until the next day. The said it is very common with kids with eye surgery to feel sick to their stomachs and throw up several times, that we should just get her to keep a bit of electrolyte drink down and that would be good for today. We assumed we would have a day with lots of naps, and her sippy cup...and that is not at all what we got!

I had to put her eye drops in and give her some pain medicine (her Dr said to give it to her for the rest of the day as a precaution while she was recovering), I asked her which she wanted first and she said "pink" of course. I was expecting a fight with the eye drops, remembering back to Noah's corneal abrasion when he was a few months older than her and what a pain it was to put the antibiotic ointment in his eyes 4 times a day. I told her to look up and close her eyes, I put the drop in the corner of her eye, then asked her to open them up. The drop went in and she said "thank you mom for putting those white things in my eye! (the bottle has a white lid)" Not your normal 2 year old. 

She napped on the way home, but then was ready to go once we got there, she sat down with her box of saltines and devoured the whole thing, along with several cups of Gatorade. She sat at the table for probably a good 2 hours playing with her babies, and arranging her crackers before eating them.

I tried to get a picture of her eye, but that proved to be a little harder than I expected





 And then she was done with taking pictures for the day

Finally I was exhausted from not sleeping well and being up early, and Maddie was fighting a nap, so we went to go lay down. Elise watched a few shows on Netflix, but quickly got bored and went back to playing like normal. She kept asking when Nathan and Noah would be home, she seemed really bored without them around to play with (thank goodness for Maddie or next year when they are both in school would be really hard for her I think!).

She ate a great dinner, and still ran around avoiding bedtime just like normal.

We asked her a few times about the surgery and all she seems to remember is that someone gave her an ouchie on her hand (her IV) and she didn't like that. I've read, and was told by the Dr that kids often don't feel pain from the surgery, but will feel the stitches in their eye, that it feels dry and itchy so they try to rub it a lot. I'm not even sure Elise could tell us which eye it was, she hasn't tried to touch it once.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Snow!

The exclamation mark was added by my children, my version included crawling back into bed and crying. Well maybe not that dramatic, but that's what I wanted to do when I looked outside this morning.

Instead we (meaning Elise and Noah. Maddie and I stayed warm inside) bundled up and headed out to make some snow angels and tracks in the snow





Thursday, October 31, 2013

To the moms of 2 kids


I was stopped again today, three times in fact during our short trip to Target, and asked by moms with 1 or 2 children how on earth I do it. Sometimes that's all they say, sometimes they share that they always wanted a big family, but dealing with 2 young children has worn them so thin that they have no idea how they would ever survive having more than that.

I'll tell you what I always tell them, it gets better.

Having 2 under 2 was hands down the hardest point in my life thus far, I know we have some crazy times to come (3 in high school or 3 in college at the same time? eek!), but that was ROUGH. Hard on me physically, and mentally. hard on our marriage, all around hard.

Don't get me wrong, we had our awesome fun days too, it wasn't bad, it was just so. hard.

I was pretty much in survival mode for a solid year.
It was crazy, but they were SO cute


So when we were expecting #3, I was just a little bit nervous. We had a 3 year old and a 2 year old and were finally feeling like we had this parenting thing down, I couldn't imagine going through the craziness of having a new baby again. But then you know what happened? 

Pretty much nothing.

The boys who had gotten used to playing with each other, kept on playing with each other. I had way more time to focus on the baby, because the older 2 had a built in playmate. They were used to sharing their space and waiting a few minutes before I could get to them, so a new baby was no big deal. No jealously, or regression, life just kept on going the way it always had.

And then I had #4 and again...

Nothing.

Now obviously more kids just adds a little more planning and time. It takes longer to make 3 lunches than it did to make 1. Getting 4 into boots, coats, hats, mittens and into the car and buckled into car seats feels like running a marathon some days. The logistics are different, but once you have a plan, there just really isn't much you can't do with 4 that you could do with 1 or 2.

Now with 4, my older 2 can sit and sing to the baby while I take a shower, or make some dinner. They can carry out the diaper bag for me, or help bring in all of the groceries. Life is just so much easier.

So I know when you see me at the store with a full double stroller, a baby strapped to my chest and a 5 year old walking holding onto the side it just looks crazy. Or that I must have weird super well behaved children (I don't, they're awesome, but they're normal). I know you have to laugh when I say my life is easier now than it was 4 or 5 years ago, but I promise you, I am not joking.

It gets so much better.


Monday, October 14, 2013

Noah 5

1. What is your favorite color? Green
2. What is your favorite toy? Lightning McQueen car
3. What is your favorite fruit? Watermelon
4. What is your favorite tv show? My new Veggie Tales songs
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Peanut butter and jelly sandwich, applesauce, and yogurt
6. What is your favorite outfit? My Toy Story shirt
7. What is your favorite game? Chutes and Ladders
8. What is your favorite snack? Fruit snacks
9. What is your favorite animal? Camels and bears
10. What is your favorite song? Veggie Tales
11. What is your favorite book? Curious George
12. Who is your best friend? Uncle Ben and Uncle Joey
13. What is your favorite cereal? The kind we brought to the mansion (granola maybe? we don't really eat cereal often)
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Play with my red car
15. What is your favorite drink? apple juice
16. What is your favorite holiday? Valentines Day
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? My white nighty night (stuffed polar bear)
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Cereal
19. What is your favorite thing to eat for dinner? Tortilla soup and grape salad
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? A daddy


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

And we're patching

I do realize I've hardly posted in the last few months, and half of what I have has been about Elise's eyes, but really I think our last 4 months can be summed up with: Elise's eye issues, had a baby, Anthony had ankle surgery.

Anthony's surgery has been pretty boring and sometimes downright frustrating, so I won't post about that, but I'll try and up the cute baby posts and more about what the boys are up to soon

Anyway, we had Elise's 2 month check up today and her left eye looks MUCH better, but still not working quite as it should, even with glasses on. So for at least the next 3 weeks, for 3 hours a day, we are patching.

For some reason I'm more nervous about this than I was with the glasses. I think with the glasses, they helped her to see better right away, whereas wearing a patch will eventually make her vision better, but for now strips her of her vision in the better eye.

We're trying to stay super positive about it, in some ways glasses and patching can be much harder for young children, because they can't understand that it is helping them and just want them off. Older kids know enough to know that they are *different* and don't want to be. I think we fall right in the sweet spot, Elise is old enough to understand that this is for her own good and I am not trying to torture her, but she has no idea that wearing an eye patch or glasses could be weird, or something everyone in the world wouldn't want to do.

We have a few girly options sent home from her Dr today, she immediately chose a purple patch with pink shoes on it (of course I heard in my head "yeah, shooooes")

We're 15 minutes in with no problems so far, only 5025 minutes of patching to go until our next appointment


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

4 months old

How on earth has it been 4 months already? I look at this baby and she definitely has lost all resemblance of a newborn. Rolling, trying to sit up, laughing and "talking" to us. She enjoys playing with the big kids and watching everything they do. Wasn't I just pregnant like last week?

 She's our longest baby so far, measuring in the 78th percentile for length at her last appointment. Still skinny like her siblings though, about 12lbs 13oz

 She loves everyone and everything, if you look at her, she will smile. She really enjoys laughing at the baby in the mirror :)


 I think this will be the last month where it's easy to take pictures, she is quite a bit more interested in moving around than her sister was. I had to look it up and Elise didn't roll over until she was 6 months old, Maddie's not wasting any time staying still!
 While she still hates tummy time...
 ...she is convinced that she should just be able to crawl already. If she didn't get mad so quickly, she could definitely be scooting across the room.
These girls love each other so much, they already spend a good chunk of the day playing together. They have their bad days too when Elise is convinced that Maddie is being mean to her. Elise cries, then Maddie cries. The teenage years are going to be interesting!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Chores

Surprise, surprise, 4 kids make a lot of mess. Not that they are extraordinarily messy kids, but just in *being* there is a lot to do.

And well, as much as I'd like to pretend to have it all together and be super mom, I'm just not. Plus, all of that cleaning severely cuts into my knitting and sewing time. Not happening.

So lately, we've been working a lot with the kids on chores, especially with Anthony on crutches for the last 4 weeks, and 2 more to go, I need all of the help I can get. I thought I'd make a list of all of the things my kids can, and do help out with around the house. It might help some other moms struggling to keep up like myself, and on one of those days I feel like I've lost all of my brain cells, I can come back here and remember all of the great things my kids are capable of helping with!

I'll break them up into age categories, and obviously the older kids can do all of their jobs, plus the younger sibling jobs as well.















Maddie (3 months)
  • Nap
  • Eat
  • Smile
  • Roll over
  • "Talk"
*yes these are important jobs too! They give us some free time to get stuff done, or entertain us while finishing our chores. Who doesn't want to do the dishes with a chatty baby strapped to their back?

Elise (2.5, these jobs are pretty appropriate from 18 months-3, some younger kids might not be able to do all of them, but could help, and work towards doing them alone. Elise can do all of these at 2.5)
  • Pick up toys
  • Put dirty laundry in laundry basket
  • Put away folded clean laundry in correct drawers
  • Put books on the bookshelf
  • Put shoes on the shoe shelf
  • Wash windows
  • Sort clean laundry
  • Clear dishes from table
  • Put away plastic/kids dishes (we keep these on a lower shelf all of the kids can reach)
  • Put away groceries

Nathan and Noah (4-6)
  • Make beds
  • Sweep
  • Vacuum
  • Put clean clothes on hangers
  • Fold towels
  • Match socks
  • Wash baseboards
  • Wash walls (at leas the lower half)
  • Wipe table
  • Put away silverware
  • Spot clean kitchen floor


The boys LOVE hanging up clothes
I know it sounds like a lot, but really, if done promptly and not stalling and playing when they should be getting chores done, none of this really takes more than 15 minutes a day. And most things are not done every single day.

We also try to make chores fun, we have races to see who can finish first and the first person done has their book read first at bedtime. We try to beat a timer, or a recent favorite is cleaning dance parties. We put on some music and try and see if we can finish whatever job we are doing in 1-2 songs (depending on what it is), we take random dance breaks in the middle and it keeps everyone moving instead of getting distracted. It seems to be working well since early this week I turned on some dance music and Elise started cleaning up without me even saying anything!

Our house still isn't perfect, but it's taken a lot of the pressure off of me to teach the kids that we are all responsible for our belongings and taking care of our home!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Glasses

Or as Elise says "flasses"

As I'm sure 99.9% of the people reading this saw on facebook, Elise got glasses!


She LOVES them.

It took about 2.5 weeks from the time we found out she would need them until they came in, so I started researching. I read a lot about tricks to keeping glasses on kids, how to take breaks from wearing glasses because of eye strain, how you should maybe take them off in the car at first so kids wouldn't throw and break them, how they would probably need to be replaced or fixed over and over again from breaking.

And in the end, I didn't need any of that information. We put them on on August 27th, and she hasn't taken them off (except for sleeping and bath time) since!

It's crazy how quickly she adjusted to wearing them, and how much she loves them. We didn't even know she had a vision issue until her eye started turning in, but I am shocked looking through her lenses that she could even see at all before them.


It's fun each day when she puts them on and just laughs because she is so excited with what she sees, it's like she forgets when she wakes up that she has them, and just goes about her business like nothing is wrong. Then I put her glasses on and she giggles with excitement and tells me she can see my leg, or my foot or that baby doll sitting on the floor, her smile gets huge as everything comes into focus.

I've heard a lot of parents talk about how sad they are that their young child has to wear glasses, and sure, it would be nice if she had perfect vision and we just didn't need to worry about it, but for me so far, I just have so much joy watching her explore the world with them on, looking closely at all of the things she has just never noticed before, I can hardly imagine her without them already. And it's only been 2 weeks.

I'm sure we'll have struggles in the future, maybe with patching, or deciding she doesn't like them, or want to wear them at some point. But for now, we're all loving her new look.
 




Nathan 6

1. What is your favorite color? Well I have 3 favorite colors, orange, red and yellow, sun colors.
2. What is your favorite toy? My favorite thing to play with is my legos
3. What is your favorite fruit? All of them
4. What is your favorite tv show? All of the Lego ones
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Macaroni and cheese or a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and cheese sticks
6. What is your favorite outfit? My Lego shirt
7. What is your favorite game? All of my Lego games
8. What is your favorite snack? Pirate Booty
9. What is your favorite animal? Giraffe, because they're so big
10. What is your favorite song? My "santa song" (one that he made up)
11. What is your favorite book? My 2 Lego books
12. Who is your best friend? Noah and Elise
13. What is your favorite cereal? That Rainbow kind that I see on TV sometimes
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Making forts with chairs and the wagon
15. What is your favorite drink? Lemonade
16. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas because then we get all the presents
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? My chipmunk and my elephant and my bear and my frog and my other bear that Nana made me
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Oatmeal and cereal
19. What is your favorite thing to eat for dinner? French fries and chicken nuggets and hot dogs
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? An Engineer like Dad


Saturday, June 15, 2013

50 things to do this summer 2013

Here is my list this year! Looking back over previous years...they are a lot the same. But that's okay! It's a nice reminder to do fun things during the summer instead of just veg out, which is what I want to do some days!

I'll keep this linked up right over there ------>
so that if anyone wants to check out the progress, it will be easy to find.

1. Go on vacation at Cedar Point!
2. Start running again
3. Run a 5k
4. Go to the zoo
5. Take the kids to the splash pad
6. Eat popsicles
7. Design a new knitting pattern
8. Go swimming
9. Have a backyard campout
10. Survive a week without Anthony while he's fishing
11. Read lots of books
12. Go for long walks
13. Have a bonefire
14. Watch Fireworks
15. Go to an Indians game
16. Have a cookout
17. Have Maddie Baptized
18. Go to my youngest brother's graduation party!
19. Sew something fun
20. Have a date night with Anthony
21. Paint my nails (and maybe Elise's too!)
22. Eat ice cream
23. Play with bubbles
24. Dance
25. Play at the park with the kids
26. Finish organizing my craft room
27. Paint Elise and Maddie's room (wishful thinking)
28. Sell the condo!
29. Go to the fair
30. Enter knitting in the fair
31. Play in the sprinkler
32. Build legos with Nathan
33. Spend lots of time at the library
34. Make some fun craft projects with the kids
35. Take lots of pictures
36. Finish knitting my Coastal Hoodie
37. Blog more :)
38. Get a haircut
39. Have a movie night
40. Sibling game nights
41. Make ice cream
42. Cook something new
43. Get back into shape
44. Ride the train at the outlet mall
45. Have a picnic
46. Fly a kite
47. Take more videos of the kids
48. Organize toys and bookshelves
49. Make salsa
50. Roast marshmallows

Friday, June 14, 2013

I was "that" mom yesterday

You know, the one walking through the store, with several screaming children. Ignoring them and going about her shopping. The one people stare at. The one no one even tries to help with the "wow it looks like you have your hands full" line because it's just already too far gone of a situation.

In almost 6 years of being a parent it was probably about time I had that moment to bring me back down to earth a little bit. I've been lucky, that in those years, I had never had this happen before. Not with my own 3 kids, not with others that I've watched. I've gone out with 4 plenty of times, and while I had the occasional whining or a short little breakdown that lasts a minute or two at best, I had never walked the entire time through the store with at least one (and sometimes two or even three) children crying hysterically with no end in sight.

I've never judged those moms before, I definitely get it. If I am getting everyone ready to go, helping find clothes, shoes, coats (it was weirdly chilly yesterday for mid June!), making sure everyone has gone to the bathroom, hair is brushed, diaper is changed, baby is fed, piling them all into the car and buckling 4 car seats, driving the 15 minutes to the store, getting all 4 out of the car and safely into the store through the parking lot and into a cart I am NOT turning around and going home without any food.

It was a humbling experience that I am not ready to repeat any time soon.

Lesson learned, I am not supermom, and going grocery shopping *right* before lunch is probably a bad idea.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Madeline Clare

Maddie is 3 weeks old today, and I can finally post pictures again (yay!), so it's probably about time I write down exactly how her birthday went before I forget it all. If you don't want to read about how dilated I was, or how much I hate back labor, then maybe just skip down to the bottom to see the cute pictures. I promise I am not posting graphic details, but I do include what exactly was going on.


I'd been having a ton of contractions for the last week or so, and I just knew it was going to be soon. Sunday I had contractions 3-4 minutes apart for 6 hours, but they were not getting any stronger, so I knew I wasn't in labor, but that I very easily could put myself into labor if I wanted to.

Wednesday morning I had my last appointment and ultrasound, she was head down, estimated about 6lbs 5oz, and I was 3cm dilated. I've always gone into labor between 3-4cm shortly after a Dr's appointment. That night was Physical Therapy, and Thursday morning was supposed to be Elise's MRI, so I was taking it SUPER easy. I didn't do much at the pool, mostly just floated around and stretched.

When I came home, Anthony was cleaning the kitchen, so I decided that I would give Elise her bath and it wouldn't be too bad.

By the time I was done I was having much stronger than normal contractions and could feel my cervix cramping up. I knew they were doing something, but was still hopeful I could stop them at that point.

I laid down in bed for an hour, and they never let up at all. I knew at that point that there was no stopping them, it was just a matter of how long it would be. I called my mom and said I wasn't ready for her to come yet, but to get her things together because I was pretty sure we were having the baby that night.

Anthony was still cleaning up and had mentioned he was going to sort and fold laundry and take a shower. I was urging him to just hurry up and get ready and THEN he could do other things since I didn't know how fast this was going to go once I got up from bed. And reminded him in the past that he had to convince me it was real labor where as this time I knew.

I got up and things immediately got much more intense and I could feel she had turned posterior. I was having horrible back labor and had to get down on all fours with every contraction, which I am sure looked a little comical since they were about 1-2 minutes apart, I still was having excruciating hip pain so it was hard to get up and down and I was trying to put last minute stuff in my bag.

At 9:30 I called my mom and told her to come over. I called the after hours line for my Dr's office to let them know what was going on and the responder laughed at me and told me to just go to the ER and  my Dr would meet me there. That was the first time they didn't have my Dr call me back to check in and make sure, so it must have been pretty obvious that this baby was on her way!

My parents came and I practically ran out the door barely saying goodbye to them, I was in no mood to chat, and contractions were so close I just wanted to get there.

We got to the hospital at 11, and I must have looked pretty good because they made me walk to L&D from the ER, which is all the way on the opposite side of the hospital. I walked through contractions even though they were horrible because I just wanted to get there already.

They checked me and I was 6cm dilated. We had to wait in triage for a little bit because they were so full. We ended up getting the last room available.

My nurse was great and we got a good 10 minutes on the monitor and then she let me take it off. I HATE that thing and protest every time, but they always have made me wear it at least 20 minutes out of every hour.

I asked to be checked at 12 because I was feeling a lot more pressure, no urge to push, but my water must have really been budging. I was still a 6 which was a little discouraging.

I sat back on the ball and continued to have really strong contractions in my back and down my legs. My Dr came in at 12:45 and asked if I wanted to be checked again. By then I was 8cm and she said she was pretty sure if she broke my water we would have a baby soon. I debated a little bit because after Elise's birth I didn't want to deal with horrible back labor with no cushion from my water, but at the same time, I have always delivered a baby within about 30 minutes of my water breaking, and I thought maybe she was having a hard time getting into a good position because of the excess fluid. So I said she could break it.

That's when things got SUPER intense. I had about 4 contractions on the ball and suddenly felt a bit of an urge to push. With my last 2 as soon as I felt the urge they were out in about 5 pushes or less, so I wasn't wasting time letting the Dr know I even felt a slight urge.

I got back in bed at about 1 and the Dr came in while I just started lightly pushing to counteract the pain. I've never felt so in control during pushing before. I definitely credit my Dr who just really was talking me through things and encouraging. I'm glad she was right outside and I called her in early so she didn't just catch the baby like my last 2.

Madeline Clare was born at 1:09 with the cord wrapped around her neck. She was moving and breathing fine, but took just a little while to pink up, so they let me hold her right away for a few minutes, then took her to a warmer right next to me to try and get her a little pinker.

I had the tiniest little tear right along my scar, and just needed 2 stitches. The difference in how I feel is amazing to have that small of a tear.

They gave her back just a couple of minutes later and she latched on right away and nursed for about 15 minutes.

She is so perfect and I feel so blessed to have her. She is such a laid back baby. When she is not eating or sleeping (which she is awesome at) she just sort of looks around and stares at us. She even tries to pick up her head and look around which is just crazy for a 36 weeker. If I wasn't so 100% sure of my dates, or she wasn't COATED in vernix and pretty fuzzy, I would wonder if she were really that early since she doesn't act at all like my 36 or 37 weekers at all.

Yes, there are a million pictures of Elise with the baby, but she was SUPER excited and the boys have sort of been there, done that even though they really do love her :)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

First day alone with four

First of all, she's here! I'll post more on that later when I figure out this posting pictures issue I am having, because what fun is a baby post without pictures?

Today is my first day home alone with all four kids. I wouldn't exactly say I'm worried, I've done the four kids thing before, I even had one crazy day of five that I am so not ready to experience full time yet (at least not 5 under 6 while 32 weeks pregnant!). But it's going to be a bit of a crazy day I think.

I'll update here throughout the day just like I did when Elise was born because that was just really fun to look back on once it was over :)

Today is an extra long first day since Anthony has softball tonight too, luckily I have some crockpot meals all ready to go, so hopefully it will go nice and smoothly until bedtime and then Maddie and I can relax for the evening.

5:30 Nathan comes in to ask me if it's morning yet. No, it is not.


6:15 boys are up for the day

6:30 Elise comes in to snuggle with me and Maddie for a little bit before we get up

7 Everyone is eating breakfast, and then the kids get to watch some Jake and the Neverland Pirates while I feed Maddie and have some coffee

7:55 Elise has her first meltdown about not being allowed to kiss the baby while she is sleeping. She decides she needs to cry in her room for a minute to regain her composure

7:59 Elise decides to cry in her room again because I won't let her dump out a bag of knitting things.

8:00 "I'm okay now, I go play now"

8:10 Explain to the boys the plan for chores today

9:00 1 load of laundry sorted (boys), craft room half organized (me) taking a break for some Lego Star Wars and to feed the baby.

10:00 2 loads of laundry sorted, craft room 2/3 done. Break for snack. Number of Noah timeouts: 3

10:17 Elise dumps out 30oz of water on the floor while I am untangling yarn

10:20 Elise drinks the rest of my cold coffee while I am cleaning up the water

10:25 Noah has a meltdown and decides he is too tired to help clean up, and too hungry to take a nap, so he's going to throw paper airplanes instead

11:00 break for some more Jake and the Neverland Pirates. Number of Noah timeouts: 5

11:26 Elise put salt on her cookies from snack time, we're just going with it.

12:00 lunch. Noah is having a pretty intense conversation with the white cheddar bunnies from his lunch.

12:29 Elise squishes half of her banana with her hand just for fun, then yells "I wipe my own self!" until I hand over the wipes.

1:00 naptime and a piece of cheesecake for me

1:49 Wake up to Nathan and Noah running around the dinning room with water guns...Elise wakes up. Everyone is crabby.

2:30 fold all of the laundry that the boys sorted this morning, Elise steals her 3rd banana of the day while I'm busy

3:30 Throw in a loaf of bread in the bread machine to go with dinner

4:15 Trying to feed the baby and clean up in the kitchen, tell Noah to get out of the pack n play for the 500th time today.

4:38 officially give up on trying to accomplish something today and am just counting down until bed time.2 hours and 22 minutes to go.

5:22 Stop stalling and force myself to at least do the dishes since the bread won't be done for another 25 minutes

6:50 Trying to get everyone down for bed. Maddie is the only one listening. 

7:15 Everyone is at least quiet and in their own rooms if not yet asleep. Some days I really just don't possess the patience to be Noah's mother.

House is a mess, you wouldn't know I spent the entire day trying to clean it. At least the clothes are clean and sorted if not put away. Dishes are done, craft room is still about 2/3 done, and that's about it.

It sounds like a crazy day, but really it was just like any other day only I'm functioning on way less sleep than I got napping for the last week, and I have to nurse a really relaxed baby every couple of hours who just sleeps or looks around during the in between times.

Hopefully only about 3 more hours until Anthony is home, but I'm not anticipating anything exciting happening before then. 

Friday, May 10, 2013

An update on us

No, I'm not dead, just busier than we've been in a long long time.

I'll try and keep it short in the hopes that I'll update more frequently now, I will soon have lots of time to sit in front of the computer with a nursing baby :)

Nathan just finished up his first year of school this week, he absolutely loved preschool and can't wait for kindergarten in the fall! He's learning to read and spends most of his days building detailed Lego creations, I'm surprised daily by how smart he is! He's also recently started doing 3 part math facts in his head. No one taught him to do it, he just decided it would be fun!


Noah is growing up more and more every day. He loves food and to cook and is often found making breakfast for himself and Elise if I am taking just a little too long to get to it in the morning for his liking. He and Elise have really become buddies this year with their time together while Nathan is in school, it's fun to watch the 2 of them play together and come up with plans for what they are going to do that day.


Elise is 2 going on 15. She potty trained herself a few months ago, and only has the occasional accident here and there. I haven't had to do a thing, she just decided one day she wanted to do it and that was that. I may have to have her train the next baby for me ;) She routinely puts herself in a timeout if she gets too upset, and them comes out and tells us she is sorry when she is done. She's still obsessed with clothes and shoes and hair stuff, I have never met a girlier girl.


Anthony has been going to grad school this year and it's been a bit of an adjustment for us getting used to not having him home several nights a week. We're definitely looking forward to some more family time this summer now that he is off until fall.

I'm 34 weeks pregnant and hoping this baby stays put just a little bit longer before making an appearance. It's been a bit of a difficult pregnancy for me especially near the end here as I developed Symphysis pubis dysfunction (SPD) which basically means that the ligaments in my pelvis have loosened up much more than they are supposed to which can make it difficult and painful to do simple things like stand up from sitting, roll over in bed, and even walk. I've been in physical therapy 2-3 times a week for the last month and while this can't correct the problem, has definitely helped manage it so I can continue to do everyday things as long as I take it easy. I really look forward to my therapy time, since it's the only time I'm completely pain free and I can move and stretch in ways I haven't been able to in months! Thankfully this is a problem that will most likely disappear completely after the baby is born, so while it's frustrating now, it's nice to know it's a short lived problem.


Aside from that I've been babysitting, and teaching ballet, both of which have become increasingly more difficult. While some might think it sounds silly, I'm definitely looking forward to a break once the baby is here!

And that's about it for us! We have a crazy couple of months ahead of us, but I'm hoping I'll find some more time to keep things updated!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Elise 2

I can't believe our baby girl is two! She is acting less and less like a "baby" everyday, in fact, she keeps the boys and really anyone around in line and under control :)

1. What is your favorite color?Pink
2. What is your favorite toy?Babies
3. What is your favorite fruit? Apples
4. What is your favorite tv show?Show
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Soup
6. What is your favorite outfit? A skirt
7. What is your favorite game? with dad
8. What is your favorite snack? fishies and cereal
9. What is your favorite animal? A cow
10. What is your favorite song? (she sings her own)
11. What is your favorite book? "My Heart is Like a Zoo"
12. Who is your best friend?Sawyer
13. What is your favorite cereal? Cheerios
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? dogs
15. What is your favorite drink? water
16. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas (then she added "Tree gone")
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Babies
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Yogurt
19. What is your favorite thing to eat for dinner?Soup
20. What do you want to be when you grow up?"no"

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Here we go 2013

So for those of you who have been following along...there really hasn't been anything to follow! oops.

I really want to make a better effort to post here, even the boring, stupid, silly things that happen day to day, because the reason I started this blog was so I had something fun to look back on from what we did all day when they kids were little, and I really want those memories.

So to keep me on task when I feel like I have nothing to write about, I am going to try and stick to these prompts at least for a little while until I get back into the swing of things.

So this week:

Nathan is...playing lots of Lego Lord of the Rings. Typically I don't let him spend so much time playing video games, but with Christmas break and all of the craziness, I've been letting him spend a lot more time than normal playing. And you know what? I am actually REALLY impressed! He beat the entire game in 4 days. 4 days of not all day playing, but playing a lot. It's not just button mashing fighting off bad guys, but there is lots to figure out, and I am pretty impressed that at 5 he has figured it out with no help. Now to wean him down to his normal hour a day of tv/video game time :)

Noah is...building train tracks, car tracks and painting lots of pictures. This week he is definitely enjoying all of his Christmas gifts. Oh and scavenging for money every chance he has to fill his cheeseburger piggy bank!

Elise is...taking care of her babies, all 4 of them. She sleeps with them, carries them around everywhere, and is even trying to potty train them. Something she is also working on this week! We're taking it slow, but she is getting better at telling me when she has to go, or at least when she needs a diaper change. I'm considering pushing her just a little more, but for right now am just letting her take the lead and asking her lots if she has to go. So far, so good.

Baby is...about 5oz and moving all over the place. I am finally starting to feel movement everyday now, which is lots of fun. I am curious if this baby is going to be super active like the boys were, or more laid back like Elise. We have our 20 week ultrasound on the 21st, and even though we are waiting to find out this time, I am really excited to get a look at a bigger baby!

I am craving...fresh bread and olive oil. One day this week that is all I ate...for 3 meals. I will probably gain 200lbs if this keeps up.

I am working on...some longies for Elise, a hungry caterpillar cocoon for the baby (SO cute!) and converting the rest of our velcro diapers to snap diapers.

As a family we have...had a movie night, sort of. It ended with sending all of the kids to bed 30 minutes early because they couldn't stop picking on each other. Hopefully we can find some time to do something fun this weekend.

My goal for the next week is...declutter the dining room and keep up with my Motivated Moms app!

Favorite meal this week...chicken paprikash and fresh bread