Friday, February 28, 2014

Noah - Week 1

Wow, soo crazy to think he is one week old already and changing everyday!!

For the first few days Noah was in the NICU, so holding him was less frequent, I first held him when he was just shy of 1 day old. It was really hard seeing him hooked up to the machines, IVs, and only being able to hold his hand or touch him. For the first day though M stayed by his side, taking breaks with my family to come see me or eat, because I was stuck in bed for 15 hours after delivery. 

He was discharged from the nicu on Tuesday, so we stayed the night in my room with him before going home to make sure he was eatting well and what not! He did great! He ended up sleeping in my arms for most of the night because he wouldn't settle, but the nurses said that's normal. 

Eating: Noah has been great at breastfeeding so far!! Despite receiving formula in the nicu to top up my colostrum the first couple days, which we allowed so he could get off his IV. Since he nurses every 2.5-3 hours, we had one 4 hour stretch and we paid for it later with a cluster feed evening and a very unsettled baby on Day 5! My milk seems to be coming in well despite being at high risk for low milk supply due to my blood presure, early delivery and thyroid. 

He hates burping, luckily Daddy has the touch for this, I am getting better!! After talking to the doctor we learned that he might not have to burp after each side!! He gets squirmy when he does need to!! 

Sleeping: Noah is working hard on self settling before a sleep, and usually his sleeps last 2-3 hours, we wake him when it gets to 3 hours. He tends to be awake after his 3AM (time varies) feed. He sleeps in bed with us, but in his Bummzie pillow - seriously best pillow ever!!! He sleeps best swaddled. I have been nursing in bed at night with a whole bunch of pillows propping me up because getting in and out of our bed in still hard with my incision. So I sleep on a funny angle around the pillows and Noah and M is on his side. When he is awake, he is soo alert, just wide-eyed and curious!! 

Clothing: Newborn size, which of course I didn't have any, aside from 2 sleepers - luckily they were packed in his diaper bag! The outfit we brought him home in is now a bit too short!! 

So M had to go clothing shopping for him - yes I was soo jealous!!! But M did a great job picking out 4 new sleepers for him!! We have some new born 3 piece sets, but pants don't work for him just yet because he's soo small!! I know they don't stay in this size long, so we didn't want to buy much! 

Diaper Changes: He is a machine!!! Hates having a dirty diaper, but hates having them changed!! He has peed on himself twice, once for each of us. He is wearing newborn size. M has been great with diaper changes and has changed Noah waay more than I have!! 

First Bath: Noah technically had his first bath in the NICU, which unfortunately they didn't call us down to help, so needless to say we were pretty nervous to bathe him at home for the first time. So day 6 early in the morning we bucked up and got it done and it went better than we expected! He actually didn't seem to mind it, aside from being chilly at first: 

Skin and Hair: He definitely has my hair and after his bath it spiked right up!! His skin color is pretty dark, in fact a lot of people thought maybe he was jaundiced, but after they checked him 3 times to be sure, his levels were low. He just can't wear yellow! 

What The Doctor Had To Say: His discharge weight was 6lbs 9oz and at the doctors he weighed 1/2 an ounce more 2 days later! His length at the doctors was 19.5 inches, chances are his length was off in the hospital or they didn't get a good stretch because there is no way he grew an inch that quick!! 

Nicknames: Stretch, Spike, Captain, Mr. Shake Rattle and Roll.

Fur Baby Update: the dogs are still adjusting. Gracie is super protective, gets up when he makes a noise, wimpers when he cries, follows him around. Lily just tilts her head to the different noises and keeps a watchful eye on him. Both of them have their noses out of joint and appear to be mad at me, but they will come around. Lily doesn't like the house warmer, and we ended up kicking everyone out if the bedroom until we settle with him a bit more, as the dogs end up panting and no one gets sleep. Binx thinks that all the baby stuff is hers now, in fact while were in the hospital she took a sudden liking to the bassinet in the pack and play that was covered... Brat cat!! Jazz could careless and Lux just wants his fleece blankets and my attention. 

Personality: He is super laid back! Of course Noah has had some fussy times, but it's mainly when his schedule gets thrown off. He doesn't like having a dirty diaper, but also doesn't like being changed! He has what we call the diaper dance, grizzly growl faces, and a whole lot of smiles!! 

My Recovery: I'm feeling better than I expected for ending up with a c-section. I don't have much of an appetite, but my guess is because of going 48 hours unable to eat, that it caused that problem! But I cannot get enough water!! I've been forcing myself to eat, but nothing really catches my attention as a want! 

With the pregnancy I gained 35 pounds, and I'm down 20 - 15 to go! Clothing-wise is still a struggle, as my maternity pants are too big, but with my incision, I can fit into my pre-maternity pants (not the smallest ones) but they rub funny on my incision. I also struggle with finding shirts I can nurse in easily! I need to get more nursing tanks! 

What would have been 38 weeks:

Coming home was soo surreal, I'm blessed with an amazing husband who did his best to help ease my mind of coming home to a renovation mess. He vacuumed and washed the floors, cleaned the bathroom, changed the bedding, etc. - all things that I would have wanted done before going in to have our baby. He has worked hard on getting the bathroom done - just little jobs left, paint is up, floors are down and vanity is in the bathroom! 

I won't lie and say it's been stress-free, it's been crazy at times, better yet I have been crazy with worries, disappointment set in regarding how I wanted my hospital stay to go, but the one thing that kept me at bay was holding our miracle! Knowing that yes, I didn't get the pictures I wanted, a clean house to come home to, an easy recovery, etc. but I have a healthy baby and that alone makes those feelings a bit better!! I felt useless and I felt like crap with my blood pressure being high for the first few days at home, but I just let my emotions go. 

Still can't believe he is here and better yet that he is ours! We made him!! No one takes him home at the end of the day. I get overwhelmed with happiness, pure bliss knowing these things. 

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

36 Weeks

This was written before having the baby. I went into the hospital at 36 weeks 5 days, so this info is leading up to that time, not beyond.

How Far Along:
36 weeks - Feb. 9-15, 2014
Size Of Baby?
A honeydew!

Baby is working hard on learning how to breath on his/her own. Skin is smooth and soft and gums are rigid.

Liver and kidneys are working, as well as the circulatory and immune system.

We hit exactly one month until the due date, less than a month to go! Half way through the week, we found out even less!! 

Maternity Clothes?
Pants are getting harder and harder to put on, too bad it's winter time and I can't live in dresses and skirts!!

Excuse the renovation mess in the background! Hopefully it will be dealt with soon!! 

Stretch Marks?
Still just a small one, but nothing really noticeable.
Team Green! But anxious to find out!! I'm starting to think boy more and more?

What the Doctor Had To Say:

  "The wheels are falling off my wagon, this baby is coming sooner than later". We had a rather eventful appointment turn into a triage visit. You can read about it here, just so I don't have to type it all out again. 

But to summarize it, my blood pressure is climbing, baby is doing great, weighing in around 7 pounds, but we are not going to make it to March! He was talking about inducing this week, but because my blood work came back okay, he increased my meds for a week, and we are setting a date next week (which is actually this week since these posts are a week behind). We are playing it day by day now. My belly is no longer measuring ahead, in fact a week behind at 35, but low and behold it is only because the baby has dropped soo much!

I can actually hear myself snoring! M says he doesn't mind, but it annoys me! Drooling in my sleep is also excessive these days, probably from sleeping with my mouth open.

Tossing and turning trying to get comfortable and the usual 2-3 times up on average at this point. Waking earlier than usual, but feeling somewhat rested when I awake.

I am also getting more pelvic and hip pain, but that's to be expected towards the end here. The heating pad is helping a little with this.

Baby Purchases This Week:
We bought the baby's teddy bear! After behaving and staying put on Wednesday's appointment, we realized we still hadn't bought the baby a special bear from us. So we found just the perfect bear:
M really wanted to get the puppy dog one, so we might have to buy Deacon the Dog by Jellycats. Might have to be a gift from the dogs lol. But that can happen later!! 

Made/Done this Week:
- M got the lamp finished!!
- picture frames are painted, pictures printed (although now I have a few more to do)

- outlet covers are up, wardrobe is shimmed up
- bassinet skirt is on
- paint on the shelves and mobile are touched up

Angel Food Cake! 
Baby is still kicking up a storm in there! S/he does not like it when I sit straight up, I think it might be squishing where s/he is hanging out.

Baby had a lazy day on Wednesday during our ultrasound and during our non-stress-test. I think it was just too much excitement for everyone! But once we were home baby was kicking like crazy.

Much better as far as my cold goes! Just a few sniffles here and there, but I've had them the whole pregnancy! My throat is still scratchy :( 

- I'm feeling more and more uncomfortable, but in all honesty, I wouldn't trade it in for the world! I've really loved being pregnant and I know my time is coming to an end rather quickly.

- Braxton and Hicks are more consistent lately. 

 - I feel like this baby is going to drop right out of me! Putting on pants/socks/shoes is now a chore, just because lifting my legs almost feels impossible anymore!

 Just a few finishing touches left to do, like hanging pictures and what not!

Seeing sweet Baby V, hearing how well the baby is doing, now we just need my blood pressure to co-operate just a little bit longer after this weeks excitement. I can't even say scare, because we are ready, we were just surprised that it will be happening soo much sooner than we anticipated! Baby's have their own schedule right? 

Belly Button?
It's still in, but.... We saw it pop out! It was creepy! Baby was sitting straight up my middle, and when I went to roll out of bed, while twisting it popped out. M thought it was cool, I was creeped out! So now we wonder if it will pop! I do feel an outer ridge around it. 
Wedding Rings?

Best Moment of the Week?
 Seeing Baby V's sweet face. We had always seen the profile, but never front on and this week we got the baby's nose and lips, as well as another profile!
Look at those pouty lips!! We are in trouble!! 

Crazy Pregnancy Moment:
Our doctors appointment. M and I didn't go into our appointment thinking we could be having a baby that day, or even this week. After spending the day in triage, we realized just how soon this baby is coming - ready or not. March 1st is no longer a realistic goal. Playing things day by day and hopefully setting an induction date next week.

Bump Pics:
(didn't get one)

Looking Forward To:
Meeting Baby V!! 

Monday, February 24, 2014

A Letter To My Pregnant Self

February 14, 2014, 

Dear Pregnant Self,

I'm not even sure how to start this letter off, because in my mind I am still in shock and awe that we got pregnant. But with that being said, I am so very grateful to have had this experience and I hope experience it again.

Now that we approach the last few days, albeit only 36.5 weeks, almost 37, I feel the need to thank you for the time we have had! I have honestly felt my very best during this pregnancy! Right up until this point where I have been told my wheels are falling off my wagon. My blood pressure is no longer co-operating on medication. The doctor has told us baby is coming sooner than we thought. But with that being said, we are ready.

Selfishly though, I don't feel ready. I just want to hold on to this time being pregnant right up to the end. It took me 4 years to get here, and the last 36 weeks have gone quicker than I realized. I have embraced this changing body and loved every minute of it. The aches, the pains, the changes, the flu, broken bones, etc - its as if they weren't even that bad.

As excited as I am to meet this little peanut, I know that this time being pregnant could be my last, and despite being soo very grateful to experience this blessing, I now know even more what I could be missing. I know I cant live my life guessing my future, but I also know I am on borrowed time. And I know that because of my fertility issues, it has made this pregnancy all that more special.

We sailed through this pregnancy! No morning sickness, just a few nauseous days, my skin was a mess, but I was pregnant, it didn't matter, I reached my goal. We survived my Mom's stroke and recovery, pool installation, renovations, the flu at 20 weeks, blood pressure issues starting at 25 weeks, ankle fracture at 26 weeks, reflux like crazy, Christmas with a fractured ankle, another blood pressure scare at 32 weeks, and now again at 36 weeks. We have been growing a healthy baby all along

So with all of this being said, thank you for the last 36 weeks, I will be amazed with my own body for accomplishing this goal from here on in! Miracles really do happen and despite not being ready to let this time in my life go, that I have enjoyed to the fullest, through the good and bad, I am ready to meet my miracle!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Sassy Stork Review

 Today I want to share a little shop I found while scouring etsy for baby hats! I came across the sweetest chevron hats at Sassy Stork.

Of course with Baby V being gender neutral at this point, it was hard to pick hats that would work, until I read closer that I could customize my order!! So I started searching like a bandit and check out some of the options:

Set of 3 top knot hats for girls Coral, Aqua, Grey

Set of 3 top knots hats for boys Blue Black and Gold

They also have organic options like this gem:
Organic Knit Top Knot Hat

Hats aren't all that the shop has to offer, the shop also sells:
Black and White thick stripes leggings for boy or girl

Made to order Owl Car Seat Cover for Any Infant Car Seat
custom car seat covers

Coral/Turquoise and chevron diaper clutch

diaper clutches!!

So I was torn in between the chevron hats and the elk hat. In discussions with the shop owner, she offered to throw in the elk hat for me to review!!

I ordered size 0-3 months and just love them!!
She let me custom pick the colors of the chevron hats to accommodate our gender neutral baby.

I seriously cannot wait to see Baby V sporting these hats!!!

Huge thanks Kate the shop owner for this opportunity!!!

Be sure to go and check out Sassy Stork!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

It's A.....

 Baby Boy!!! 


Noah Jacob James Vance

February 16, 2014 (37 weeks gestation) 
8:22 AM 
7lbs 1oz 
18.5 inches

We couldn't be happier now!!! He had a rough entry, was in the NICU for a few days and now we are both at home. 

After being induced suddenly due to "severe pre-eclampsia" on Friday Feb. 14th, 2014, 36 hours of labor and then an emergency c-section, we had a rough couple of days but it was all worth it!! 

Our miracle is here and we couldn't be happier!!! Birth story to come, but for now, I will leave some pictures:

Monday, February 17, 2014

Influenster Mystery Brand Vox Box Review

I was selected by Influenster to do another vox box review, but this one was a little different. I actually didn't know what product I was trying, aside from knowing it was from L'Oreal. Then after trying them for a week, they send me full bottles of the product.

They sent me this box, with these bottles, labelled just as you see:

(Shampoo, Conditioner, Split-End Serum)

So I tried it! They all smell amazing of course. The shampoo was shampoo, nothing special from what I could tell. My hair felt a bit strawish after rinsing it out, but once I put the conditioner in it felt great! Sleek and smooth, and detangled easy. I towel dried my hair and put the split end serum on my ends. I have never used a product like this and had no idea what to expect. I almost found that my hair dried quicker once I put it in, granted I used the hair dryer, but seemed quicker? My hair felt great and smelt great!

Two days later I found my starting to get greasy, which has been a problem during this pregnancy if I used anything but Pert Plus? Don't ask, because I don't have the answer! So I am interested in trying this post pregnancy to see how it holds up. 

My guesses? Is that it is an over the counter brand and most likely a Garnier Fructis product? It just smells similar. I don't normally use Garnier, but after trying the mystery brand, I might consider putting whatever brand this is into rotation to help with my split ends, or at least try the split end serum more.

"I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes."

Friday, February 14, 2014

Maternity Sneak Peek

Update: we are still at home, resting as much as we can after a little more excitement last night! Luckily I got my blood pressure to come down on its own without having to go in, but I'm not sure we will make it the whole week after seeing it spike again. 

Tuesday night we received our sneak peek of our maternity pictures we had taken by Dudek Photography!

Damian and I have known each other since elementary school, we went to high school together and even worked together. Now he is an amazing photographer, and I couldn't have picked someone better to capture this amazing time in our lives!! I knew that he woud help capture the magic we feel carrying this miracle!! Of course there was no disappointment!

Love this new family photo!!! Baby V would have needed those boots for the next shot: 

Love how magical this picture feels!! He was really able to capture M and I, and even the dogs personalities in the picture above!! 

And one of my sweet bump and I: 

I wasn't kidding when I said we were out in the middle of a snow storm!! But the turnout was sooo worth it!! I love each and every one of these shots and cannot wait to see more!! 

Huge thanks goes out to Damian for capturing these sacred memories, moments I will never forget!! 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

OB Appointment Turned Triage Excitement

Our appointment yesterday went far from as planned as could be. We went from walking into our appointment happy go lucky, to finding out we could be having the baby yesterday. Clearly, since I am posting this, baby did not end up coming yesterday, however baby will be coming in the very near future. Let's start from the beginning shall we?

We had an ultrasound, which took a little longer, as they were doing a growth scan, biophysical profile and placenta check. Baby passed the biophysical with an 8/8, but took a while to do so, because baby was pretty lazy and didn't feel like moving too much! But we got it done and the baby passed! Baby is still measuring ahead, still head down and is weighing around 7 pounds. We got some more pictures of our sweet baby, including a face shot of the nose and lips! Soo precious!!

As I have mentioned previously, I have been having blood pressure issues since 25 weeks. I was put on medication and all was working well until 32-33 weeks, when I ended up having to increase my meds because my BP was starting to climb again. Then comes along 36 weeks... I had started to notice spiking at home, headaches were starting again, so I mentioned it to my OB yesterday. Upon arriving my blood pressure was 147/97, this was the range I was getting at home with a few higher number at times as well. I also had a trace of protein in my urine again.

After some discussions, he informed me that "my wheels are falling off my wagon" and that this baby is coming sooner than later. I think M and I looked like deer in headlights when he started talking about delivering that day or the next few days. He informed us that our goal of making to 39 weeks isn't realistic anymore and that March isn't even on the board either. He was now talking this week or next, playing it day by day. He discussed admitting me for high blood pressure, but figured if he was going to do that, he may as well just induce us, we are far enough along, the baby is healthy and a good size.  We had a few options, but it all depended on what my blood work and monitoring revealed

I needed to go and get blood work done and head right to triage instead of going home. My blood pressure wasn't much better in triage. They hooked the baby up to a non-stress test, to which at that point the baby was not co-operative as far as kicking/moving went, however in the waiting room, baby was going crazy... I was on the monitor for at least 1.5 hours and was finally able to be taken off after moving around to get baby kicking.

 The residents came in, discussed possible induction for that day or this week even, to which M and I weren't to keen on, but obviously we want to do what is best. I had a few savings grace which aided in allowing us to come home for the time being. My blood work was good, no indication of stress on my liver/kidneys, counts were good, no issues there at this time. The non-stress test was fine, cant say great, because the baby didn't want to co-operate, but there were no heart rate concerns or anything serious, just baby was maybe napping. They noted a few contractions on the monitor, but nothing serious as far as that goes either. They were reluctant to discharge me from triage with my blood pressure that had spiked up to 155/103. So they called my OB, who wanted to see me before I left and sent me up to his care to make the final call.

He looked at the whole picture, since my blood work came back fine, my body wasn't showing stress aside from blood pressure, baby seems happy and content, he was willing to increase my medication, with hopes it would buy me another week, at which point it would be safer for the baby, and I would be considered term. He gave me strict instructions as far as coming back in within 24 hours if it doesn't go down, as well as strict guidelines on when to come back should it spike or even start to climb again. I also need to be aware of fetal movements to make sure baby is still moving around lots. So next week we talk induction dates, assuming we make it that far, but I wont be making it to March after all. 

Upon arriving home last night, baby was super active, just maybe needed to be in a familiar place, with familiar sounds. My blood pressure has come down, and we are just taking it easy day by day. Luckily I don't have much left to do, just a few things left to throw in my hospital bag, and get M's packed. M plans to install the car seat tomorrow. We enjoyed a nice dinner out upon discharge and were able to come up with as much of a game plan as possible. 

As much as we are ready for the baby, clearly the bathroom reno is still going down and is of concern to us, M is working really hard to have it done by Monday. But if it is not, we have a plan to just pack everything from the bathroom back into the bathroom, should Baby come before it's done and we can deal with it after. However he worked in the bathroom until 11:00pm last night and got all the drywall up, and hooked up the fan completely. Tonight he plans to mud the walls and pour some self-levelling concrete on the floor. Tomorrow night he will sand down the walls and re-mud if necessary with hopes that paint will go up on Saturday and flooring down on Sunday, vanity and lighting in on Monday. Clearly the finishing touches like trim, the mirror, etc can wait. The vanity will most likely not be hooked up completely, since we haven't found faucets we love yet, but it's not a big concern, I'd rather get what we want than settle because we are in a rush. As long as the messy parts are done, we are good! 

Assuming my blood pressure co-operates, I'm hoping to make the hashbrown casserole still and cookie dough for the freezer inbetween resting. Luckily they are all simple to make, however not the end of the world if I don't get around to it. I also plan on getting these thank you cards done and crocheting while relaxing. I'm happy the nursery is essentially done, just some frames to hang and hopefully we will be able to snap some pics up there this weekend. 

Monday, February 10, 2014

35 Weeks

How Far Along:
35 weeks - Feb. 2- 8, 2014
Size Of Baby?

A coconut! How fitting, because I wish I was somewhere warm enjoying a pina colada or two! A girl can dream right?

Hearing is fully developed. If baby is a boy his testes have descended. Baby is mostly developed at this point and is just growing away inside!! 

Crazy in less than a month this little peanut could be here. 

Maternity Clothes?
Mostly lounge again! My shirts seem to be getting shorter and shorter! I did get presentable a few time this week:

 It was a struggle finding something to wear for our maternity pictures, but we got it figured out!! 

Stretch Marks?
Still just a small one, but nothing really noticeable.
Team Green!

What the Doctor Had To Say:
I'm sure this will be my last week off!!! 
It's happening on a minimal basis, especially with this cold. Napping hasn't happened much because of the renovation, and having company over during the time I would nap!

I did snag a nap after our maternity shoot with the heating pad and Lux to help warm me up!

Baby Purchases This Week:
I did buy a net for the bassinet/pack and play to help keep the cats out once the baby is here. So far they haven't had any interest, but I wanted one on hand just in case! 

Baby did get a gift this week from N:

Made this Week:
Crocheted - just a few more stripes to go! I really need to buckle down and get it done! 

Mobile pieces are done, and the mobile is hung!! 

Book shelves were cut, built, painted and hung!! Sneak peek: 
This will probably be the last peek into the nursery before the BIG reveal!! Which will hopefully be next week, so I tried to distort the image a bit!! 

M has started roping the light fixture. 

I started painting the picture frames for the gallery wall. 

Nacho dip! 
Donuts again!! 
After coming down with a cold, I heard a teaspoon of honey helps sooth your throat? So I tried it and man did the baby go crazy!!! Constant kicking for over 20 minutes!! Won't be doing that again before bed!!

Baby also went a little crazy during our maternity shoot in the snow!

I'm coming down with a cold!! I have a scratchy sore throat :( Hopefully it doesn't last long. Other than that I am feeling great!
Took my first longer trek during our maternity shoot during a snow storm, which wasn't as bad as I thought on my ankle. I did find myself somewhat short of breath at time, but trekking through knee deep snow can do that on a good day right?
I feel like I am starting to slow down, it did take me longer than usual getting groceries. I find I don't walk as fast with baby soo low!
Starting to feel a bit overwhelmed with the renovation mess! I feel like it's taking over. M keeps telling me it will be done before I know it.

Our maternity shoot!! Despite the crazy weather, I am sure it will all be worth it when we see how the pics turned out!!

This weeks focus has really been on the bathroom and getting as much of it done as we can. 

I sterilized all my pump parts, a few bottles, and pacifiers. So we are ready to go in that department. 

Diaper bag is officially packed and ready to go. 

I started making freezer meals, chili and lasagna were made this past weekend. I would like to make up some cookie dough and some potatoe casseroles. 

Belly Button?
In, but unrecognizable. Hard to believe my belly button could be soo small. It's not out yet, but it feels soo different to me! 
Wedding Rings?
Off. And I forgot to put them back on for our maternity pics!! Fail!! 

Best Moment of the Week?
Probably our maternity pics!! I am happy to have had the chance to document this amazing time we have had with this pregnancy! I love that we were also able to incorporate the dogs into the shoot as well!! 
I don't have a sneak peak at this point to share, but you can bet I will share one when we get it!! 

Crazy Pregnancy Moment:

Donuts... must have donuts! I have actually given in to these cravings more that I should admit! Double chocolate donuts to be exact. I was a bit disappointed when I went and got more on Friday and they gave me an extra donut of M's, instead of double chocolate! Okay I was more than a bit disappointed, but I let it slide! 

Bump Pic:

Front View:

25 weeks (taken minutes before fracturing my ankle!)

15 weeks:

Looking Forward To:
The bathroom Reno being done, so my nesting self can clean the house!!!
Seeing how our maternity pics turned out!!


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