Monday, March 6, 2017

Silas is here!

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Silas decided to make his arrival 3 days before his due date, and after 33 hours of labor. He was born in the water at 12:21pm, weighing 8lbs 5oz and measuring 20.5" long! My heaviest baby, but right in the middle for height.

So let's start from the beginning!
To preface: I had planned a home water birth, but my body and iron do not get along, so my hematocrit and hemoglobin levels risked me out of my home birth.

Contractions started about 3:20am on the 19th, and they stayed 9-10 minutes apart until the afternoon. They went down to about 8 minutes apart after a long walk around the neighborhood with Sam and the kids. I napped a little when we got home, and watched TV with the boys for a while, and then we walked up to Dunkin for coffee (because even labor cannot keep me from Dunkin). By the time we got home from Dunkin, my contractions were 7 minutes apart. Soon after my contractions jumped right down to 5 minutes apart, so we decided to get our bags and the kids bags ready. We made our phone calls and we went to the hospital/birth center. They didn't want to admit me at first, because I was 2-3cm dilated (I let them check because they couldn't admit me otherwise), but an hour later I was at 5cm so they gave us a room. Our photographer had arrived at the same time and she helped so much with the kids. We sat around the room, talking, laughing, making jokes, and playing with the kids.
 We updated our families every so often and talked about placentas (a lot). Everything was going great, except for a nurse - who wasn't my nurse - who decided to try to make my kids leave, and when we wouldn't make them leave (hospital policy allows them), she lied to the OB who was going to catch the baby, the other nurses, us, and security, and said my midwife was banned from the hospital. She then had my midwife removed from the property by security. This is all being taken care of, but was definitely a bump in the road. My midwife did continue to support me as best as she could over the phone, and she was really helpful despite not being allowed to be there in person.
Shortly after all this I got into the tub to labor, and it was amazing. I started getting really shaky though, and that usually happens around 8-9cm for me, so I got out of the tub (at this point I didn't know I could have him in the tub). I let them check me, and I was at 8cm - and still laughing and talking through contractions. This was, by far, my easiest labor. I was shocked at how painless it had been so far! I sat in the bed to rest for awhile as I'd been awake for well over 24hrs at this point and wanted a break. I stayed at 8cm for about two hours, despite going back to the birth ball, tub, doing squats, and walking. I was so tired by now that I was getting worried I'd be too tired to push if it didn't happen soon, so I allowed them to break my water. I got in the birth tub about 5 minutes later, and within 15 minutes I was pushing. While it was definitely my easiest labor, it was my hardest delivery.  His head was out in 3 pushes, but it felt impossible to push out, then I think about 3 or 4 more pushes for his shoulders and body because his shoulders got stuck. My OB gently turned him so he could come out- she was amazing! I was in so much pain, and totally shocked that I finally had my water birth, that I barely smiled in my birth photos.
 But I almost immediately felt off and I didn't want to hold him, because I thought I was going to drop him. I started bleeding a lot, and they brought me back to my bed and gave me a shot of pit, a bag of pitocin, and 2 shots of methergen (sp?) to slow my bleeding. All the medication worked, and I was fine. And now I have a 3rd perfect little bean to love on <3

All photos in this post belong to myself, and to my photographer at KML Photography and are not to be used without permission.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

After 2 years of neglecting this blog...

We have some news!

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And I'm already 37w3d:

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And I've been experiencing prodromal labor for 2+ weeks now, which is rad. And by rad, I mean frustrating and exhausting.

It's another boy...

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And like Gage, his name is a secret! Shh! We're calling him Ember for now.

This pregnancy has been the most taxing, by far. With SPD, severe acid reflux, severe anemia, severe RLS, low magnesium, low blood pressure, etc., I feel like I can't catch a break. Trying to make the best of it though! With a magnesium supplement, magnesium oil, Zantac, and sleepytime tea, I'm finally getting some sleep, which is very helpful. It makes keeping up with the house, two kids, a dog, a cat, and two rats much easier.

Speaking of the kids...

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Noah is six now! He lost his bottom front teeth recently, and he's very proud. Still home schooled and he's in first grade. His newest obsession is YouTube videos of other people playing with toys... even though he has tons of toys to play with himself. Kids, man. He does pretend to make his own videos, too. It's really cute! He's excited to be a big brother again :)
Gage is three now, and still nursing (but if you knew us, you wouldn't be surprised, haha!). Nursing through pregnancy is no joke. I hate it, but it's a big comfort for him, so it's whatever. He's not really being home schooled yet, but he does have a big interest in letters so we talk about them. He can actually name most! He's very excited to be a big brother and share his milkies with him :)

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This is our pain in the ass border collie, Ella. She loves the kids and the kids love her. She has anxiety from her previous home and we're working with her on it, but she has some behavioral issues due to it. She's very loving and gentle with the kids, so at least that's not a worry! Mostly just peeing in the house and stealing food. We still love her, she's cuddly and silly and too cute not to.

I think that's good for updates, for now... I've missed this blog and I'll try to get back into it more!

Thursday, July 17, 2014


So first things first! Noah is now forward facing. He's maxed the height limit on his Safety First Guide 65 (40") so we had to turn him forward. I'm happy we made it rear facing to 3.5yrs! So, being the crazy car seat lady that I am, I'd like to point a few things out here. Notice the position of the chest clip. It is VERY important to keep it at armpit level. If placed over a baby or child's belly, it can cause internal bleeding; and it's meant to position the harness properly on the shoulders. If it's too low it could cause the baby to be ejected from the seat in a collision. The straps are snug - not tight enough to hurt but not loose. You can't see it in the picture, but a forward facing seat needs to be top tethered as well. As you'll notice, there are no after market products on my seat (attachable toys, seat covers, strap covers, etc.). These affect the harness placement and compromise the safety of the seat as well as voiding your warranty. If you have any car seat questions don't hesitate to ask! 
If you have a Facebook account, this is a wonderful group for car seat help that's full of CPST's and friendly members. Click here to see it!

And of course, Tiny Buddha is still breastfeeding. Nine months strong with no end in sight! Look at those beautiful eyes! He loves his boobies and still signs "milk" when he's hungry. Breastfeeding is the most beautiful bond and I cherish every nursing session, knowing that one day he'll be too old to want to nurse and after that too old to want to snuggle and get hugs and kisses when his friends are near.

Tiny Buddha took his first steps last month and is only getting better at walking. He's nine months old now!
He loves standing up by himself and when he does, he gets the biggest smile on his face. He's so proud of himself! We're very proud, too. I can't believe he's starting to walk so soon. It's so weird to see such a little person trying to walk around, especially since Noah didn't walk until he was 15 months old. Babies are so, so different! 

Noah's a master chef now. He can cook macaroni and cheese, spaghetti, soups and rice all by himself now! With supervision, of course. The only things he can't do are turn the stove on and off or strain the noodles. He even scoops the finished food onto plates and into bowls! He loves his independence.
Speaking of the BugMan, we have a new method of "punishment" that isn't quite punishment. When he's too worked up and frustrated, he takes a "chill break" - it's like a time out without the attached negative implications. He doesn't go because he's in trouble, but because he needs a break to chill out and relax - hence "chill break". He takes a bottle of water, glitter, and glitter body soap and shakes it up and watches the glitter float down while he relaxes. It works far better than everything else we've tried, and it shows him that there are better ways to deal with his frustration.

Sorry for the short post, but the kids need me. Gage wants a snack and Noah wants to play with his Yo! Gabba Gabba! dolls. :)

Friday, June 27, 2014

Pool day with the tiny spawns

I may start queuing blog entries if I can figure out how, because I don't have time every week to blog, but when I do blog, I usually have time for a few. If anyone knows how to do this - let me know!
*Side Note: I'm fully aware that my breasts are lopsided.
Breastfeeding problems, man.
Worth it, though.

Today, the munchkin kids and I went to our friend's pool. She has a farm and they were happy to see the animals as well! They both loved the goats and the turkey and the ducks. Noah loved the roosters, but Gage stared the bigger rooster down until it crowed and then made his boo-boo-lip face and started tearing up. He doesn't like not winning a staring contest! The pool was a little bit chilly, but easy to get used to quickly and Gage loved it. Noah, on the other hand... well, he's still very sensitive and does not like being pushed into things. So in hindsight, carrying him into the pool with me to "just dip your feet in because you might like it!" wasn't the best idea. He didn't want to go in after that. So he played around the pool, in his very spiffy life vest, of course. 
That's sun block smeared all over his face in the picture. He's my little pale one, the Irish, German and Polish seem to be very dominant over the Italian and Native American in him. Seriously, you would never know he was either of those by looking at him! He's wearing his new life vest that his papa bought him. This one has a piece behind his head to keep his head out of the water if he's on his back. It's pretty nifty, I like it, and he seems to like it well enough.

We're still using that amazing sun block I blogged about last summer, the Purple Prairie SunStuff. You can get it here. The smaller one has lasted us since last summer! That said, when it runs out we will be making our own. That post will come in time! But this stuff has a 1 rating on the EWG website (0 being the best, and 10 being the worst) and is 30SPF.
Don't order from Amazon because they charge you $25 +tax even though on the Purple Prairie site the larger one is only $20 +tax and ships faster than Amazon does haha. I have no idea if it's sold in stores... I order a lot of our stuff online because the stores around us never seem to have the cool stuff I'm looking for.

I made this for Tiny Buddha earlier today. He's now the coolest eight month old on the block, with the coolest sippy cup on the block. My down time is more productive than I really get credit for. Anyway, Gage loves it.
Before all the "But it's glass! A baby can not use a glass sippy!" happens, let me explain.
We have plenty of these jars around the house. They're canning jars, meant to withstand very high temperatures and pressure from, well, jarring/canning hot things. Like our homemade sauce. The glass is very thick, and trust me, they fall on our tile floor in our kitchen all the time. The taller, thinner Ball brand break more easily, which is why I chose this jar instead.
It doesn't leak and he doesn't normally just crawl around and play with it, it's really only for when I'm on a birth and he needs to eat because we still breastfeed (and will be for a few years!). When he has breastmilk from a sippy, 95% of the time he is being held in daddy's arms, or whatever relative is babysitting while we work.
I've heard that those foam insulating sleeves add an incredible layer of protection as well, if you're really worried about it.
Anyway, we love it, and so does Tiny Buddha. The rest of us tend to drink from Mason jars instead of cups as well.

☮ Peace & love ☮

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Okay, so how many of my posts begin with apologies? It is SO busy around here now that the tiniest spawn is mobile.
Bugman has pretty much mastered his alphabet and is now working on reading. He can sound out many 3 letter words and I can't tell you how proud I am! He knows the name of the town he lives in, his full name (yes, even both middle names!) and takes showers now instead of baths because he's such a big kid now.
He sleeps with that foam sword in the picture so he can protect everyone because he's now sleeping in his big boy bed again - did I mention that in my last post? I can't remember. This sleep loss is killer.
His new favorite movie is Frozen and he talks about it all the time.
Oh, we got a Sit N Stand stroller! I adore that thing, man. So does he. Even Gage loves it and he is one of the pickiest children I've met when it comes to sitting in things that aren't a pair of arms or a wrap. It's so easy for quick in-and-outs, like you would expect with a three year old. He has to stop every few minutes to pick a dandelion out of the grass and make a wish. The storage space is awesome, I can fit a towel, two umbrellas, food and a diaper bag and some toys without any problems. And it's super easy to push, and folds pretty compact for its size. I'd definitely recommend it to any mama of two (or even 3 - my toddler sits on the jump seat and my 6 year old brother can stand on the... you know, the stand-y thing, while my baby sits in the front). Psst, Baby Trend, y'all should compensate me for sharing the Sit N Stand love!

Baby Led Weaning is the bees knees. A little rough, a little scary sometimes, but it's so fun and surprisingly easy. This site has a ton of information on the whole thing! Keep in mind that "weaning" is used in the UK sense of adding supplementary foods (solids), not in the sense of weaning from the breast or bottle. We're still nursing and our goal is somewhere around 3 years, whenever he decides to wean.
His favorite foods as of yet are watermelon wedges, apple slices, and sweet potato fries fried in coconut oil! He's eating an apple slice in the picture.
So one of the best things about BLW is probably that, depending on the food, it's significantly less messy than mush. It's also less preparation time and more delicious - wouldn't you prefer whole chicken and steak over chicken mush or steak mush? Blech.
I'm totally not knocking purees though. I made all of Noah's baby food by hand, and I adore making my own purees. That said, BLW is just so much more fun than purees are, and so much less work!
We're trying to avoid grains for the most part, but we've had a cheat night or two where we ordered pizza and let Gage go to town on some pizza crusts. There were zero complaints on his end! That boy loves him some crust haha.

We got some sibling photos taken a few days ago for my dad, and after those, our awesome photographer got this super rad shot of the Baby Dragon nursing. I'm so happy to have a nursing picture that's not a "selfie" on the couch! I'm considering scheduling a babywearing/nursing shoot in the near future... stay tuned :)

You can find her photography page at this link: Horizon Life Photos. I love her work, she took family photos of Curtis and I and our littles back in March. She's great at what she does and the shoots are always so fun! Lots of laughter and joking around, while keeping it professional.

I'd recommend her to anyone in my area. To my knowledge she does business head shots, family photos, maternity photos, children's photos, graduation photos, wedding photos, engagement photos, pet photos, senior photos - pretty much if you need photos for any occasion, she's your girl!

I'm very excited to say that my business is doing well. I am now offering car seat safety education in addition to babywearing education, cloth diapering education, and my standard doula services. I have two car seat safety courses to teach in the next week and it fills me with so much joy to be empowering other parents with even more safety knowledge, and potentially helping to keep even more littles safe and sound!

If you want to check them out, my business page on Facebook is located here, and my website is located here.

I'll be back to update soon (hopefully!)

☮ Peace & love ☮