Thursday, May 28, 2009

Two weeks old

Two weeks have passed since the birth of Jude.  I have sat down with the intent to blog numerous times, but before I even had a picture downloaded have opted for a shower or sleep instead.  But, given the momentous nature of reaching two weeks, I decided to make this a priority.  

Here are a few things we have learned about our little Ju-Ju-Bee so far...
*Jude is definitely a cuddler.  He loves to sleep upright on people's chests.  Of course, this isn't ideal at 3am, but I have found there is nothing more calming than resting on our screen porch with Jude laying against me.
*He has absolutely no schedule what-so-ever.  He'll wake up anywhere between 1-4 times a night and has yet to take an official nap in his bassinet. 
*He already has stinky feet!  Now, he either has inherited this unfortunate trait from me or this is due to the fact that he has not had a bath since coming home.  But, really can you blame us?  He has the most perfect sweet smelling head and the softest baby skin...why would we bathe that away?
*He has already outgrown the newborn sized clothes.  
*He seems to have trouble passing gas on his own, which can lead to some serious grunting at night.  Luckily we have found some massage techniques that help, but still not fool-proof.  

Sunday, May 17, 2009

One of the benefits of being a big brother...

Is being able to enjoy all of the goodies people bring/send you!

Thank you Paw-paw for the bouquet of cookies, Jen and Justen for the bouquet of fruit, and Shelly, Christi and Kate for the meals!!

All of these goodies for Finnan are well deserved- he has been an amazing big brother!  He has taken to Jude since my mom first showed him his pictures, before even coming to the hospital, demonstrating an understanding of the situation of which I thought he would be incapable.  At the hospital, he brought my diapers from his own diaper bag for the baby and when the baby started fussing, offered him his truck and book.  My mom and Finnan were at the park when we arrived home.  To lure Finnan away from the park, my mom asked him if he wanted to go home to see mama.  He responded with a nod and did the sign for baby as well.  At home, he has continued to be very sweet and helpful, bringing the baby toys, diapers and even a blanket unsolicited.  Finnan even brought Jude home a stuffed giraffe from the zoo yesterday.  Finnan has also managed to be very gentle when touching/handling the baby, even when pointing out all of his body parts, again and again.    

Jude's Birth Story

My body began preparing for Jude’s birth weeks ago.  At around 34 weeks gestation Braxton Hicks contractions started affecting me, with some strong enough to stop me in my tracks.  Even though they say these contractions do not progress labor, with the intensity and frequency that I was feeling these contractions, I was not surprised to find out that I was already 2.5 cms dilated at 37 weeks.  What did surprise me was that Jude stuck it out in utero long enough for me to make it to my 38 and 39 weeks appointments.  At 38 weeks, I found out that I was 3cms dilated and 70% effaced.  At that point the doctor offered to induce me at 39 weeks, although she did not think I would make it to that point.  I also did not think I would make it to 39 weeks because I started having irregular contractions the following day (Thursday) and through Friday.  My mucous plug also passed on Friday.  Nervous about having care for Finnan, I had my mom come to Atlanta on Saturday, sure I was going to have a Mother’s Day baby.  Then, everything stopped.  At first, I was down, then started to take advantage of my final days without a newborn by getting things done around the house and spending a lot of time with Finnan.  By the time I arrived at my 39 week appointment, I had no desire to be induced and was thinking I would make it to my due date.  The doctor checked me again and now I was 4 cms.  She offered to strip my membranes, saying that it would put me into labor.  Well, the thought of starting a painful experience did not really sound that appealing to me, so I passed, thinking a few restful nights sounded pretty good.

The night of my 39 week appointment I woke up a little after 12:30 to go to the bathroom.  Something felt a little off, so thinking I might go into labor, I went to tell Atticus, who was still up working to try to get some rest.  Then I tried to lay down myself.   Within seconds of laying back down, I had a contraction strong enough to make me jump out of bed and start walking around.  The contraction lasted 2 minutes and then only four minutes after that one had started there was another contraction.  With this, I started to pack my bag.  By the time I was done packing, my 2 minute contractions were now three minutes apart (from start of the previous contraction) and very strong.  I had to wait for a break in contractions to go to Atticus’ office and tell him to pack as well.  (As a side note, when I came into the office this time, ‘Hey, Jude’ was randomly playing on the radio, which sealed Jude as the little guy’s name.)  With the intensity and frequency of the contractions, we decided we shouldn’t wait for the doctor to call us back and we headed to the hospital.  Luckily, DeKalb Medical is only a 5-minute drive from our house.  Atticus spoke to the doctor on the way there and she said they would be ready for us when we got there.  They took us straight to triage and I had about 3 different nurses preparing me for delivery.  We arrived at the hospital around 1:30 and I was 8 cm.  They went through the litany of required questions, none of which I was in any position to answer as I seemed unable to think.  Thankfully, Atticus was up to date on any allergies, weight height, etc.

As soon as they wheeled me into the delivery room, the doctor arrived, still with purse and keys in hand.  They continued to hook me up to the appropriate machines as she explained my options at the time.  I could wait the 20 minutes it would take for the epidural to be ready and they could then break my water (if the bag even held together that long) or they could go ahead and break my water and she thought the baby would be here in 10 minutes.  I obviously opted for option number two, but they also attached me to an IV drip, just incase the baby took longer then 20 minutes to arrive.   The doctor proved to be right, within only a few contractions from the breaking of my water bag, my body started involuntarily pushing the baby out.  At one point during my contractions, I looked over at Atticus' fingers and saw that the tips had turned purple.  I tried to let up, but within seconds I had the death grip on him again.  He was great and didn't complain, only at one point re-positioning his fingers so that I didn't re-shape his wedding ring :)  Using my body cues, I started pushing.  Two contractions and about three (very long, excruciating) pushes later, baby Jude was here at 2:24am, all 8lbs, 6oz and 20 inches of him.  He arrived as plump as could be (compared to Finnan), screaming with great coloring.

The differences between my two labor and deliveries are amazing.  Just a quick re-cap: Finnan: 26 hour labor, Jude: less then 2 hours

Finnan: pushing for 4 hours, Jude: pushed for maybe a few minutes

Finnan: 6 lbs, 12 oz, 20.5 inches, Jude: 8 lbs, 6 oz, 20 inches

Finnan: epidural was necessary, Jude: no time for any drugs

Finnan: long recover, a few days of not being able to really move around, Jude: walking within an hour of delivery

Obviously, Jude’s labor and delivery experience was preferable to Finnan’s.  Although, I have to say, if we decide to have more children, I am worried about making it to the labor and delivery room !  I have to say though, somehow you really do forget the intensity of labor and delivery.  I told Atticus that I thought it would have to be quite a while before I I would put myself through that again.  Apparently, that is what I said last time.    

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Still waiting....mmmm

I had my 39 week doctor's appointment today.  I am now 4 cms!  The doctor asked if I wanted my membranes stripped to get labor going.  I declined as I clearly had different plans for the day :)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Waiting for baby

Apparently our addition needed to last a few more weeks. My nesting instinct is in overdrive. The house is done, furnished and clean, the clothes washed, meals in the freezer. So what else is there to do? Completely re-do the landscaping in our front yard.

The construction around the house decimated most of the (little) landscaping we had, so this weekend I set out make the yard look presentable again. I decided that in order to do this, the landscaped space in out front yard needed to be about triple its old size. So, we have spent the last 4 days digging up plants, moving plants, and moving wood chips. It still is not done, as I need to create a flagstone walkway (I'm thinking that might be a little ambitious given my current state) and I am letting a decent sized area recover for a few months (it used to be the home of a very large pine tree).

As you can tell from the pictures, I am now unable to completely hide belly skin and Finnan helped us with the worm population in the yard. All the worms he got a hold of were moved to the wheelbarrrow, and to make sure the worms had even more friends to hang out in the wheelbarrow, he broke some in two.

A baby-watch update: I have been feeling pretty good. I was sure I was going to have the baby this past weekend. I ws 3cm and 70% effaced at my appointment on Thursday and had irregular contractions all day Thursday and half the day Friday. But since late afternoon Friday, there has been nothing. I have an appointment tomorrow, so I maybe I'll have a better idea then?

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Rainy day

My little outdoors man has benefited from living in a city with drought.  Its pretty rare to be house bound due to rain.  And while they have been predicting bad storms all week, only this afternoon did one hit during his play time.  

So, we spent the afternoon building with blocks (which he just started doing, completing his 100% boy-ness), perfecting his skills with the screw driver, reading, and measuring.  We have resorted to hiding the one measuring tape we have left, as Finnan has misplaced 5 others.  However, he spotted it while we were hanging pictures.  I forgot how relaxing it can be when Finnan has a tape measure (until you have to take it away).  He spent the entire evening measuring everything from couch cushions and floorboards to washcloths and shoes. He not only refused dinner to continue measuring, but he also skipped ice cream!  So far, I have been unsuccessful at capturing his measuring on camera as he'll immediately run to me to try to take the camera's measurements.    Naturally we had to invent a sign for tape measure.  

At least we'll have accurate and frequent measurements of his little brother :)

Monday, May 4, 2009

Panda love

This picture was actually taken a couple of months ago, but Finnan's love for the pandas, both live and stuffed variety has continued.  He always sleeps with at least one panda, sometimes two and can be amused by the bears at the zoo for quite some time.   He's even trying to learn how to somersault like the pandas at the zoo :)

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Just a few things to remember

Unfortunately, I don't have time to give these memories the blog posts they deserve (we still have more to do to get ready for this baby- and I'm 2.5 cms already), but I didn't want them to be forgotten in what is sure to be a blur of next couple weeks.  Who, I'm I kidding, next couple of months!

Hope you enjoy these little snippets...

*Finnan seems determined to re-create his sandbox inside the house.  He has not only attempted to bring the actual sand in via dump truck and hidden in his fists, he has managed to simulate indoor sand piles with baking soda, all spice, sanded grout, and ash.  Have you picked up on his desire to be dirty yet?

*For the most part, Finnan has stopped eating dog food.  But, who says cheerios can't be dog food as well?  A few days ago, Finnan brought Reese's bowl to his table and filled it with cheerios from his bowl.  He then proceeded to eat his snack out of Reese's bowl.  When he was done he poured his cheerios from Reese's bowl to his bowl, and vice versa.  Then he brought the remaining cheerios to Reese, in her bowl.  I actually said out loud, "That's gross, but I'll let it slide."  There's only so much one can say no to in a day.  And, hey, it was an exercise in pouring and sharing- I thought it was very Montessori-esque :)

*Going to restaurants with Finnan has not been pleasant recently.  The child simply does not like to sit still.  We are probably to blame as we haven't forced him to stay in a high chair or left restaurants when he acts up, but I'm just not much of a disciplinarian I guess.  However, I happen to have some hot wheels in my diaper bag last night and he actually sat still for dinner!  We even lingered in the restaurant for a while because he didn't seem to want to get up...I'm crossing my fingers that this is a pattern.

*Finnan has taken to diving off of his rocking horse in true cowboy style.  So far he has limited it to wrestling Atticus and not straight to the floor- let's hope it stays that way!

*We have been enjoying trips to the Botanical Gardens and Zoo this month.  The picture shows his pure joy at being in the splash grounds at the gardens.  Its funny though- even at these places his favorite activity seems to be moving dirt, sand or mulch.  I just can't keep this little guy clean...fortunately though he also seems to like to wash his hands. 

Guess I'll go eat (gummy) worms

Or not.  Apparently Finnan does not approve of eating worms (thank goodness!), even of the gummy variety.  We had dirt cake for dessert last night.  The top layer of the dessert is covered in Oreo cookies crushed very finely (to look like dirt) and then decorated with gummy worms.   Finnan loved the dirt cake in his bowl, but kept pointing at the worms topping the dessert, saying "ssss" (for snake/worm).  Atticus then showed him a worm buried in his serving of dirt cake.  "Uh-oh."  When Atticus fished it out for him, Finnan started shaking his head, saying "No, no, no, no."  As Atticus brought the worm closer to his mouth, Finnan's pleas definitely got more desparate while his eyes grew wide and the concern on his face grew.  "Gasp!" Finnan's mouth literally dropped in shock when the worm entered Atticus' mouth.  Poor Finnan had the entire table cracking up and then decided that there would be no more dirt cake for him.  The description really can not compare to his reaction.  I wonder how many worms he'll be picking up from now on....

(Sorry for the repeat picture, but it was the most appropriate :))