Wednesday, December 28, 2011


I meant to do this much sooner, but I've been a bit distracted...

Here I was at 38 weeks and 3 days pregnant.

And here is what happened at exactly 39 weeks.

Natalie Jolene was born at 12:10 AM on December 17th, 2011.  

I have a hard time saying when I actually went into labor because I was waking up with contractions all night on the 15th/early morning on the 16th.  Then I had irregular contractions all day on the 16th.  Some of them were 5 minutes apart, and some were more like 15-20 so I assumed it was just false labor.  I went back and forth so many times about whether or not I should call the hospital and just see what they thought... I kept deciding not to call because I figured they were just going to stop all together at some point.  By the time Michael got home from work they were very regular (and painful) around 5-6 minutes apart, and at 4 PM on the 16th we headed to the hospital.  

Once we were in the car it felt like they were coming even closer together than that, and by the time we got to the hospital I swear they were coming almost nonstop.  I know that they weren't, but it didn't take long before it seemed like I could barely get any kind of a break in between them.

Once we got checked in they tried to have me walk around for an hour to see if that would get things moving even faster, but that turned out to be extremely difficult.  I was having lots and lots of pressure in my lower back and walking around was just not going to work.  I was leaning on the table in our room and Michael kept trying to convince me to try to walk to the bed or to the couch.  I would make it about 2 steps before I'd have another contraction and have to turn around and lean on the table again.

Michael tried to help by rubbing my back which only led to me swatting his hand away because it hurt too badly :) It felt better for me to try and rub my own back because I knew exactly where it hurt. Our childbirth classes totally tricked me on that.  I thought I'd be all for having my back rubbed, or my legs rubbed or any kind of massage.  But no.  He was not allowed to touch me.

After that hour of attempting to walk (I probably only made it about 30-40 minutes before I wanted to lay down), things were moving along fairly quickly.  I was progressing about 1 cm per hour and was very ready for an epidural when it was finally offered.

I have no idea what time I got the epidural...  They also broke my water at one point, but again I have no clue when that happened. Michael says after they broke my water things happened really fast.

I remember feeling ready to push and kept asking if I could.  The doctor was not around at that point, but our nurse started getting my bed set up to deliver and there were times when I was practically begging to push.   She finally let me start before the doctor arrived and I'm not sure when she actually got there.  Things were kind of a blur for the last few hours... 

Michael was extremely supportive and helpful and was holding me up to push completely on his own by the end because I was so tired.

I pushed for almost exactly 1 hour and Natalie was born at 12:10 on Saturday December 17th.

There's so much more I could say about that day but it would take forever to write it all down.  Even though it was painful and exhausting, things went extremely well. We couldn't be happier with the way it turned out.

We had been keeping a calendar with people's birth date guesses on it, and Michael guessed the 17th so he was pretty proud of himself :)

We were/are extremely happy she decided to show up a whole week early!  I've been telling her all along that she needed to be a little early and I'm very glad she listened to me.

She is pretty perfect.  She's completely healthy.  Even though she was a little jaundice, her levels didn't get high enough to be anything to worry too much about.  And we love her full head of hair.

 She weighed 6 lbs. 12 oz. and was 18.5 inches long and is pretty much the cutest baby of all time.

 All cleaned up.

 And swaddled.

We technically stayed in the hospital 3 nights because I delivered just past midnight on Saturday.  It was definitely nice to be there for those 3 nights but we were sooooo ready to go home on Monday.

 She's kicking her socks off already, and ready to go home!

With her daddy.

Ignore my crazy eyes... I was (am) very tired.  But she is making such a hilarious face... I love it.

 Thinking very hard about her first bath that was about to take place...

 She didn't enjoy her first bath and was so happy to be out and warmed up in her towel.  She could have laid there for the rest of the day and been perfectly happy I'm pretty sure.

She liked her second bath much better, I'm happy to say.

 Laying in her room all warm in the sunlight.  

We are happy.  

Very very very very tired, but so happy.  

Today is our first full day alone with her since we came home from the hospital on the 19th...  Having a baby the week before Christmas turned out to be the craziest thing ever.  We're exhausted.

It's a good thing she's so dang cute. I think we'll keep her.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Ridiculous Amount of Christmas Pictures...

Well, once again Kristin has informed me that my blog is boring her so I figured I'd share some pictures of our Christmas decorations!  :)  I feel like I'll still be adding random things to the house up until Christmas actually rolls around, but here is what it looks like at the moment.

I took some last night and some today.  A lot of them.  Of basically every angle I could find...

I LOVE how the lights make our house glow at night.  It's seriously one of my favorite things.  I am obsessed with Christmas lights I think.  I'm obsessed with all things Christmas related actually.  Love it.

Enjoy, Kristin... even though you were just here and saw all of this in person :)


I made some waterless snow globes from jars I bought Hobby Lobby, some little trees also from there, and some little plastic deer I found at Michaels.  I glued 2 of them to candlesticks I got at Walmart.  I like them a lot.  They've got some glitter and fake snow in them and they probably make me a little happier than necessary.


(This was before I sprayed clear spray paint over that white tree, so now the epsom salt/glitter doesn't flake off anymore!  Yay.)


There is no letter on that stocking because it is one of our ''extras''... I've got one hidden away with the baby's initial on it but I can't bring it out yet because people will try to guess her name... and that's no fun :)

Also, that toy is actually for Dexter... but it won't fit in his goofy little stocking.  But this way we actually look like nice parents who bought our baby a stocking stuffer... :)

I am planning on hanging something from the garland separating the rooms, but the ornaments I was planning on using don't look all that great.  So I'm still thinking.

I feel like this picture should count as a Christmas decoration considering she's due on Christmas Eve... It works, right?  
Although we are REALLY hoping she's here by then... Ah.

This is sitting on our little table in the kitchen.  Ignore the wrinkled napkins and folded placemats.

We've got two shelves on each side of our kitchen window behind the sink.  I tried to make them at least somewhat Christmas-y.  The bottle of wine (from our wedding) and the pinecones actually sit there all year... But they look good sitting out for Christmas :)  The pinecones, at least...
The other side.  Not super exciting, but I'm glad there's something there!

I have been wrapping my presents with craft paper for the last few years, but I get stuck on how to make the tags and what sorts of ribbon to use and that kind of thing.  But I like them this year.  I bought glittery paper at Michaels and just cut out the first letter of each recipients name.  M's for moms and D's for dadd.  I wasn't sure if I should use the letter for their actual name or not, but I decided on mom and dad.  It works.  Ignore how goofy Owen's present is.  And I was about 1.5" short on wrapping paper so I tried to hide it with the ribbon.  I don't think he'll mind though.

Anywho, I love it.  I love our tree.  A lot.  I love that there are no ornaments on it, but I'm sure some day we'll need a tree to hold some ornaments.  We've already got some that really should be displayed somewhere... maybe we'll have to put up a little tree somewhere.

We don't have NEARLY enough decorations in my opinion, but this entire house would probably be covered if I didn't think Michael would kill me :)
The night time pictures make me super happy though.  I think from now on I'm going to allow ONLY Christmas lights to be turned on at night.  

Sounds good to me.

Ok, that was a ton of pictures... a lot of them repeats, but too bad :)