Monday, October 31, 2011

Introducing Nora Mae

Nora Mae was born on October 30, 2011 at 12:16 pm, 9lb 2oz, 20.75" long, peacefully into water and her mama's arms at home. 

Everyone is healthy and happy!  Amazing birth story to come in a few days!  Seriously, be super excited.

We named her Nora because we all liked it (Joseph had the tie-breaking vote) and Mae after my mama, the most loving and strongest woman I know.  It's her middle name, though I took spelling liberties being the PITA daughter that I am!

Here are some pictures to tide you over... they should be flooding into smugmug in the coming weeks, so check them out often!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Alternative methods of producing a baby

In order to produce a baby from my loins, I've been:

Taking an herbal supplement called 5-W for the last 5 weeks (6 pills per day)
Taking evening primrose oil - also for the last 5 weeks (I've been increasing weekly and am up to 6 pills/day)
Drinking red raspberry leaf tea - I'm up to 3 cups per day of a prett strong strength

And now I'm off to eat a big plate of eggplant parmesan from Scalini's, which promises results within 48 hours.  Haha. 

So don't say I'm not trying, people! 

We'll see Charlotte tomorrow for another appointment, I'm interested to see what she has to say.  I'll probably have my first cervical check then and we'll discuss additional options of "natural" induction - but I'm still pretty on the fence about evicting a baby, however naturally.  There's a reason she's still in there, and I'm trying to temper my impatience/worry about our plan to be flying out of Atlanta in 12 days with my desire to let this baby take her time.

Hopefully she won't keep us waiting too much longer.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Continuing to Bake

In more ways than one.

Joseph and I kept busy this afternoon baking five dozen chocolate chip cookies - Daddy's favorite!

Hopefully we'll be baking a birthday cake in the next few days.  No signs of labor so far.

Monday, October 24, 2011

The Latest and Greatest

Stranger comment, that is.

Today at the bank:

Banker: So, when are you due?
Me: Thursday
Banker (with look of absolute horror): THURSDAY?  Well.... (sputter, sputter)... You seem so calm!
Me (baffled): Um... well, we're just waiting for her to make an appearance....

What is the appropriate behavior supposed to be when out in public 3 days before your due date?  I assumed that I should still act like a rational being.  Perhaps I should be openly weeping or my head should be spinning around as if possessed???

I've said it before, and I'll say it again.  People are weird.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Our Last Few Weeks as a Famiy of Three (In pictures)

I don't feel like doing separate posts for all that we've been up to, so here's a highlight reel of the last couple of weeks!

Mama got a new lens for her camera!  You can see what it does here... it's focal length is fixed and it can "stop down" really low, so it's great for shooting in low light (i.e. indoors).  However, you have to be careful how low you go (and how close you get), otherwise you end up with fuzzy ears and chins!

Joseph got a $1 store balloon.  Not exactly the equivalent gift, but he likes it just as much.  
He picked it out himself.
Last weekend we went to an art festival that my friend is in charge of.  We had a great time at the children's area, playing with hoola hoops and looking at the puppies from the shelter.
We went to the park for a birthday party for one of Joseph's friends
We watched a little bit of Sesame Street
We went to the zoo.  Grrr!
We celebrated Daddy's birthday - I even taught Joseph to sing Happy Birthday in only 2 days!  He's not too bad at it, either.  Now he wants to know whose birthday it is ever day - 
I think because that means he gets cupcakes!
We had a "Prom Playdate" at our house.  It was adorable.  (for the record, there were supposed to be more older boys - Joseph wasn't trying to shut down all the other gentlemen!)
We went to a pumpkin patch with my mom's group.  It was amazing.  
Joseph rode the cow train (twice!)
Sat on all of the tractors
Ran around in the pumpkin patch
Visited with his friends
Galloped on the horse
We also took a hay ride, fed some farm animals, watched a chain saw artist, saw a pig race, watched people shoot corn cannons, and rode pedaled "go carts".  Mama beat Joseph and Daddy, despite her huge belly hindering her.  It was a tough race!  I think the only part we missed was the corn maze... but it was naptime!

It's been a fantastic couple of weeks - a great way to end our stint as a family of three.  Baby Girl, we're ready for you!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

New Video!

Check out our new videos - we've got one of baby rolling around (just like I did for big brother... baby #2 doesn't ALWAYS get the shaft).

We also have some funny ones tonight of Joseph being crazy.  He actually did a somersault on his own for the first time and we were trying to get him to do it again, but I have a feeling that it scared him a bit because he never got there a 2nd time.

It scared T.J., too.  He thinks that it's probably not good for Joseph's neck.  I figure that we all survived, right?  He probably will, too.

Monday, October 17, 2011


Last night while brushing Joseph's teeth, I discovered the tip of one of his 2-year molars!  He's been drooling for months, and I've been watching for them, but no dice until now.  The other three are still in hiding, but I'm sure at least the other bottom tooth will come through relatively shortly.

Not sure if this explains some of his behavior lately... there is so much going on with the new baby, his teeth, moving stress (which he doesn't understand but I'm sure he picks up on) and general 2-year-old-ness, that it's just impossible to pick out what the problem is most days.  He usually has anywhere from 1-5 meltdowns in a day that are mostly inexplicable.  He'll never tell me what is wrong, which makes me think that he doesn't know!  We just wait it out and after a few minutes of crying he generally comes for a hug and says that he's all done.  Poor little guy.

Maybe once the molars are in at least he won't have physical pain along with all of this emotional growth to deal with.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Frugal, Semi-Healthy, Toddlerific Lunch

Sometimes (ok, often) we have mac'n'cheese for lunch on the weekends.  Yes, we're all apparently under the age of 5 in our house!

In order to lessen the guilt, and stretch one box to feed 3 people, I've begun preparing it this way:

1 box mac'n'cheese (we get organic from WF or Trader Joe's)
2 cups frozen organic foursome veggies from Trader Joe's (beans, corn, carrots, peas)

When the water boils, dump in the frozen veg and let the water heat back up.  Add in the pasta and cook until it's done.  Drain and add butter, milk, and cheese powder.  Divvy up and devour!

It's pretty good.  T.J. said it's "not his preferred method", but Joseph eats it up like no one's business!  And there is plenty for the three of us at this point for a lunch.

Total cost: about $3 - and it's all organic!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

FO FO FO! I finished something!

Woo hoo!

So Baby Girl will at least have a stocking this Christmas.  Hers turned out kind of big... I'm going to block them all and hopefully get them the same size. 

I can't say that I'm 100% thrilled with it, but if decide that I don't like it, I'll just make her a new one some other time. :)  It's not like we have to be married to all of our projects, right?

I'm still planning on putting the lines (stanza? bar?) in with the notes to fill some of the blue space.  Either that or some small snowflakes.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

38 week prenatal

Last week I was excited to report that the doctor's office had me DOWN a pound.  The next day I went to see our midwife, and she had me up SIX pounds.  I was incredulous and told her that her scale sucked.

Well, the doctor's office scale caught up with hers this week.  Boo hiss.

In other news, my feet resemble paddles they are so fat and swollen, but my blood pressure is still great, and I don't have any other signs of pre-e, so I'm blaming it on being 38 weeks pregnant.  It happens.  That's probably where those 6 pounds are sitting.

Baby girl is doing great - kicking like crazy.  We are getting excited to meet her!  Hopefully she won't make us wait until November.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Preparing a Toddler for a Home Birth

I don't think I've said too much about our plans for Joseph with regard to the birth.  We have a doula coming whose job is to care for Joseph.  We're thinking that he'll probably want to be with us most of the time, but if not her job is to babysit. 

Besides that, Joseph and I have a few books we've been reading:

Hello Baby - by Jenni Overend.  This is a book about a homebirth with a midwife.  The author writes from the experience of the big brother.  He has 2 older sisters, too.  It's a pretty nice book and Joseph likes to read it a lot.

I'm a Big Brother - By Joanna Cole.  Joseph *loves* this book.  He has it memorized and goes around randomly talking about how "Daddy says babies cry to tell us something.  Let's see what's the matter".  And other things directly from the book.  It's really cute.

A story of coloring book pages that our midwife gave us - I put it into one of those plastic covers you used for writing "research papers" in 4th grade.  We've been reading it like a book and coloring the pages the last few weeks.  He loves that one, too.  It talks about the tools the midwife brings, and he loves to see the picture at the end with the Mommy, Daddy, Big Brother, Little Sister, and the Midwife.  Maybe I should add a couple of people to that page for our 2 doulas!

Besides books, Joseph and I have been watching some birth videos on youtube.  He's pretty interested in them, and he knows generally how the baby will come out.  Which leads to my funny story of the day:

Joseph: Grunting
T.J.: "Are you pooping?"
Joseph: "I push the baby out"
T.J. and me: Die with laughter

Note: he did not, in fact, push a baby out.  It was a poop.

Do you think he's ready?

Friday, October 7, 2011


Joseph's finally starting to enjoy his Skuut.  He was pretty frightened by it at first, but now he loves to shuffle along like a real biker.  It'll be neat (and scary) when he learns to glide!

Enjoying the ride

Utter concentration
Look, a leaf!
Hi Mama!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

What's going on in there?

Baby continues to be very active.  I realized this morning (lying awake at 4:30 with insomnia and heartburn) that baby is probably not the championship synchronized swimmer I've been assuming she is and that rhythmic movement is actually hiccups.  Duh.  I'm so smart.

I've been having some random Braxton Hicks contractions - I don't think I ever had them with Joseph, but that's pretty normal.  Nothing to write home about.

My prenatal appointments this week went well.  I tested negative for group b strep - the last homebirth hurdle.  Next week I'll have my blood drawn again to see how my platelets are looking.  I'm thinking they should be pretty decent with all the yucky stuff I'm taking for it (the grosser the supplement, the more effective, right???).  Charlotte measured me at 39 weeks on Tuesday.  I'm 37 weeks today.  Lots of fluid still.  I'm starting to notice a little bit of swelling in my fingers (my fake ring fits pretty well now - and it's 2 or 2.5 sizes bigger than my real wedding set.  Eek!)  But nothing out of the ordinary.  I should probably just drink some more water.

Other than that... I'm feeling pretty awesome!  The cool weather has helped tremendously in the last few weeks.  It's not too hard being pregnant with a toddler right now!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Out of the Mouths of Babes

This morning when we were all in bed waking Daddy up:

Joseph: Joseph big nose, Daddy big nose, Mama big nose!
Mama: Joseph's nose is juuuust right.

Joseph (after thinking): Joseph a baby nose; Daddy a mama nose, Mama a daddy nose!

Now, I don't think I have to tell you the size equivalents in a toddler's mind.  Clearly I have the biggest nose of them all.  It gave T.J. and me a daddy sized laugh.

A First in Pregnancy!

I'm pleased to report that for the first time in almost 2 whole pregnancies I have LOST weight between appointments!  Now, don't go all BSC on me.  I'm up 35lbs for this pregnancy.  Believe me, I can take it.  I think it's not too uncommon to lose a little at the end either, for SOME women.  Never thought I'd be in that category, though!

I have no explanation for it, except perhaps I ate too  much salt before the last appointment so I was retaining water.

Everything is fine with the baby, as well.  Heartbeat is good, she moves lots, and my blood pressure is still super low.

I celebrated by going to Moe's.  Joseph even ate most of the innards of his taco (a rarity)!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Oops, I meant SIX

I knew I was forgetting one. ;)  I think originally in my head I wasn't including the car seat.

I also picked up a moses basket... I mean, it was $6.  Am I supposed to resist that?  I think not.  Even if it's used for 10 seconds, it's cheaper than a regular laundry basket.  And I should be able to get one or two adorable pictures first, right?

How did that happen?

We've been hard at work getting things ready for the baby.  Last week was marathon cooking weekend, and this one has been about preparing the house physically.  T.J. dismantled most of our entertainment center (we're not taking it with, and it's a big task we didn't want to save until the last minute).  We now have a manageable TV stand to dispose of on moving day.

He also took down the ceiling fan he'd installed when we moved in, and put up a cheap light fixture in its place so we can still see (we lost all of our ambient lighting to baby-proofing efforts long ago).  He'll still have to take down the light and other 2 ceiling fans before we leave (we aren't moving them), but it shouldn't be too difficult of a task for him and his dad. 

While he was hammering away in the living room, I was hard at work in our room.  I cleared out a bunch of moving stuff, moved a dresser, and set up the co-sleeper.  I also put together the pack'n'play and baby swing.  I realized that we now have FIVE baby holders (infant carseat, bouncer, swing, cosleeper, pack'n'play.  How did that happen??? 

I guess it's not SUCH a stretch - we had three with Joseph in the end - and we used them all a little bit.  I'm interested to see things go with a second.

- The pack'n'play will be a "safe" place (away from Joseph) to put the baby downstairs at our new house.  It has a handy changing table, too, which might be nice on my back!
- The cosleeper obviously will live in our bedroom.  Joseph refused to sleep in it at all, but who knows... maybe this baby will be more amenable.  If not, she's welcome with us just like her big brother was.
- The bouncer was a favorite last time with Joseph.  He hung out in it in the bathroom when I took a shower, and when I was cooking or making dinner before he was old enough to put on my back.  I might look into a woven wrap this time in order to do some newborn back carries... we'll see how she feels about being away from me.
- The swing was also useful last time; one time we even got a 4-hour stretch with Joseph in it!  Hahaha.  He must have been less than 6 weeks, because we were still at the old apartment, and T.J. was so concerned that 1) he was still asleep and 2) was he "safe" in the swing.  This from the guy who was terrified of our cosleeping at first due to safety concerns!  Still makes me chuckle.
- The car seat is one I'm most curious about - since we started with Joseph in a newborn-appropriate convertible seat, we never used his car seat outside of the car.  This time we need an infant seat logistically, because we have a 2-door car.  In order for Joseph to get to his seat, we need to be able to remove baby's seat first!  This will allow us to keep Joseph rear facing longer.  We're buying a 4-door car after we move, but we this will be a good way to get us through that first month or two.  I figure it'll also be nice to have the seat inside the house and warm when we go to put baby in, since you can't bundle a baby up under their seat straps.  Who wants to get in a cold car seat with no jacket???  Not me.

So far the swing and bouncer are both big hits with Joseph!  Hopefully having them out for a few weeks will help them blend into the background so he's not messing with them so much when Baby Girl is in them (fat chance, right?)!

On the bright side of all this accumulation, we picked up all of these items second hand!  Not only saving us a bundle, but keeping baby crap out of the landfill for (at least) one more use.  I was able to make a trade with one of my mom friends for the car seat, so I know it's safe to use.

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