Thursday, October 30, 2008

Add it to the List

You can add to the list of things I said I'd never do when I had children: Be a "sling mom." You know granola-crunchy-organic-cotton mom's that keep thier infants on thier persons at all times. I bought one. Grace loves it. I love it.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Sleepless in Ohio

Many nights...little sleep. Not much to say, not many coherent thoughts happening. *sigh* This too shall pass.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Maternity Leave-Week 1&2

This first couple of weeks of maternity leave have been wonderful...and rough. As many of you probably know, sleepless nights are no fun, but somehow they seem far more manageable the second time around. Maybe it's the loss of unrealistic expectations. And, I think just knowing that this "season" is such a short one, and soon Grace will be a toddler squirming out of my arms, makes the wakeful nights cuddling with her a little sweeter.

We have been suffering from some serious cabin fever. We aren't used to staying home this much, but on the other hand, we still can't manage to get our act together enough to really do that much. Getting four people ready for anything takes a lot of effort. Today we got up (late after another sleepless night) and went to a park for a walk and to play. The sun was up, the weather was beautiful, and it was just what this house bound family needed. It was a really nice day!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Family Ties

As I'm sitting here today, everyone in my house is asleep...amazing! Except me. I am sitting here and reflecting on what an amazing couple of weeks we have had. In the midst of Grace's birth, we had so much help! I have to say how grateful I am (grateful seems to be a theme for me this month!) to have such a wonderful supportive family. Starting over a week before Grace was born, my Grandma Margie came to stay with us, just in case Grace decided to make an early entrance, we would have someone to stay with Isabelle.

If you have never had the privelage of knowing Grandma, it is certainly your loss. She is one of the most loving, kind, and genuinely Christ-like woman you will ever meet. She is in her 70's and came down for a week to take care of us! Isabelle LOVES Granny too, and thrived staying home with her while we were at work. Thanks Grandma, for all of your help and for adding so much to our lives, just by your presence!

And then, I can't help but be thankful for my parents, who came to help out to. My dad was there for a couple of days (he can't sit still too long, so flitted in and out during the birth process) and he even did some grocery runs and loads and loads of laundry. I think he felt sorry for me one morning, as I was dragging my sleepless self out of bed that first week!

And my Mom, who was there the entire first week after Grace was born. I know I mentioned this before, but her "love lanuage" is acts of service, and this is particularly WONDERFUL when you have some practical "felt needs" that come with having a baby. She tirelessly chased Isabelle around and distracted her, while we were focused on Grace, she gave baths, cooked, rocked, sorted baby clothes, changed lot's of diapers, and everything else that needed done. AND, she did it happily. Thanks Mom and Dad, for being the best Oma and Opa in the world!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The New Big Sister

As we are getting ready to go out for our first real outing with Grace, Isabelle was observing us packing the baby up in the car seat and asked, "Taking Gracie Home?" As in, is it time for her REAL family to get her?

Monday, October 13, 2008

Amazing Grace

As you can imagine, life has been busy with two little ones at home. We have loved it tho! Luckily, my family has been around to help us the first week. My Mom, the final relative hold out, just left us yesterday to our own devices! And, I'm happy to say, we made it through the night! I thought I'd share a bit about Grace's birth, before the details escape me. So, if you are not into birth stories, feel free to skip ahead.

My doctor finally decided to induce us on Monday for the next day, Tuesday, October 7. My parents and Grandma Margie came the night before to keep Isabelle and we got up and out to be at the hospital at 6am on Tuesday. I was a bit more nervous with this delivery than my last because, well...I knew what was coming!

We arrived and got settled in. They started the ptosin about 8am and I got an epidural around 10a, when the contractions were just getting uncomfortable. Everyone was expecting a delivery within a few hours since Isabelle was delivered in only four and a half. Needless to say, I was marking the hours, as the contractions started to get worse and the epidural started to wear off. Oddly enough, I felt lots of labor on my left side, but not much on my right.

I went in to the hospital dialated to about three and progressed to four in about three hours or so! Not much action happening here! Labor got worse and I kept dialating, but the babies head wasn't dropping down low enough to start pushing, so I sat up for a while and labor got really intense! The dr came in and re-did my epidural, and it got a little better...just in time for the pushing part! At about 2:45p, I was dialated to 10 and ready to begin pushing.

We had a great nurse, and between help from her and the doctor, I pushed for about fifteen minutes and with great relief, Grace Christine entered the world at 3:05pm on October 7, 2008. She was a little bruised up from birth, but so breath takingly beautiful!

The moment she came out, I said, "Thank you Jesus!" followed by, "What is it?" Conrad said, "It's a boy!" Then Dr. S said, "No, it's a girl!" Conrad replied, "Well, it looked like a boy..." I think he was just fully expecting a boy.

At 7pounds and 7 ounces, she was almost three pounds bigger than Isabelle at birth, and took several more hours to deliver! We thought they didn't look anything alike, but a few days after her birth, we think they do look quite similar!

Grace is so sweet and I actually get to nurse this little one, which has been a joy...totally exhausting and painful, but a joy, none the less! Our life seems overflowing with blessing right now, and I can't seem to be grateful enough to the Lord for His blessings in our life! But it's kind of cool to hold her late at night as she nurses, and reflect on all God has given me...given us.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Grace Christine Michael

Introducing to everyone Grace Christine Michael born at 3:05 PM on 10/7/08.Weight 7.7 lbs, Height 21 inches. Thanks for your continuing support and prayers. Both Danielle and Grace are in good health.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Week 38 Highlights

Surprise Baby Shower @ Work
Friends from work surprised me with a Baby Shower on Monday and a very nice gift certificate to Target! I’m sure this will come in handy, especially if Baby M is a boy. And he will be forever grateful that his mama didn’t have to dress him in Pink hand-me-downs.

$100 Gift Certificate to How Fast They Grow!
I just created several scrapbook pages on How Fast They Grow, which I LOVE their layout options and designs!! A few weeks back, I got an email asking if they could feature one of my pages in their “Gallery” of our trip to India. I said sure, then found out today, that they chose that page as the September Gallery winner and I got a $100 Gift Certificate to their store! Yeah! And how great to keep up on scrapbooking with the new little one!

She’s starting to get it…
Grandma said she was sitting out with Isabelle on the swing yesterday and Isabelle started rubbing her own tummy and saying, “Baby.” Grandma said it was so cute! Maybe, just maybe Isabelle is starting to understand that we are going to be getting our own baby soon. She’s such a big helper with Abby, her cousin, and with Andrew, Kim’s son, and at home with most things! I’m sure she’s going to grove on being the big sister.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Baby Update: 38 Weeks

Yesterday was my weekly OB appointment. The happy news is that I
am 2 cm dilated! That’s great considering I was not progressed at all the week before! Of course, this could mean nothing, as I think I was 3 cm dilated with Isabelle for several weeks. My doctor even started asking me, “Now what time is your last ultrasound on Friday?” She was thinking about bringing me into the hospital on Friday, but decided against it when we discussed that the baby will only just be past 38 weeks. I would really like to be closer to 39! Not that I would complain if I went into labor naturally.

By yesterday evening at work I was feeling so much pressure I was extremely uncomfortable and although I wasn’t having any contractions, I thought surely this was a sign of things to come. But I went home, and thanks to having Grandma there helping out, laid down and the pressure really decreased. I think it must be from sitting in an office chair all day?

Anyway, my last appointment with my OB will be Monday morning, and then she will decide if we are going to induce on Tuesday or Wednesday. So, whatever it is, we will have a baby or be having a baby by this time next week! Yeah!

And to pacify all the grandparents reading this out there, here are some pictures from last weekend at Circle S Farms.