Harrison at 3 Weeks

Monday, January 28, 2013

Harrison's personality is definitely starting to come through this week and I'm sure it will start coming out more and more every day. I can't wait! He is almost always happy and content, except when he's hungry or overly tired. He likes to just look around and observe.  He's getting better at sleeping in his crib but still gives us the best nights if he's in my arms and snuggled on my chest.  He is still a scrawny little guy but he's starting to fill out. He even has a tiny double chin! 

He seems to love music (especially Radiohead) and just chills and listens to it with us.  He loves looking at anything bright and just stares and stares.  He's a master puker and spits up regularly.  I'm getting pretty good at being able to tell when it's about to happen, but we all still get covered with it anyways.  He really likes peeing on himself right when I'm about to put on a fresh diaper - then we get to give him a warm bath. He HATES when I have to get the snot out of his nose, but calms down so quickly afterwards.  

He also thinks its funny that I haven't been able to do a real newborn photo session with him. I have tried several times but I have never had such an uncooperative baby. It's weird because he can sleep for SO long by himself, but he just wakes up as soon as you move him at all.  Maybe it's a combination of it being my baby so I'm more impatient, and he just having a strong startle reflex, but I'm pretty sad I didn't get to try out 90% of my ideas.  I've pretty much given up at this point.  I was able to get a few and I am so happy I got those, but he sure isn't my little model like I'd been looking forward to for so long! Oh well. He's too cute to get upset. 

Harrison at 2 Weeks

Monday, January 21, 2013

Harrison is growing so quickly! We had his 2 week appointment today and he has grown a ton in the week in a half since our last appointment.  His stats:

Last Appointment: 
H - 20.5 in
W - 6 lbs 12 oz
Head - 35 cm

H - 21 in
W - 8 lbs 1 oz
Head - 36.5 cm

He is a very happy and alert baby. He's wide awake and looking around several hours a day and eating around every 2 hours during the day. At night he usually gives us nice long spans of 4-6 hours of sleep between feedings, which rocks! He takes a bottle like a champ and has recently decided he doesn't care for his pacifier.  He loves being super warm and bundled up and hates the cold.  He LOVES car rides and could probably sleep for hours and hours if he was riding in the car.  He likes to spit up all over us, especially if we've just showered or if he's in a new outfit or on a blanket we love.  We've learned to keep him as upright as possible for a good while after he eats, but he still tends to spit up whenever he lays down.  He doesn't like when we rub lotion on him or when mom tries to pick off his flaky dry skin.  He's awesome at sleeping in his crib now but only when dad puts him in there, because mom ends up giving up and bringing him to bed.  

We definitely can't keep our hands or lips off this little guy.  He has the softest yummiest cheeks and neck and the most perfect little nose.  We are so in love!

Jesse's Version of the Birth Story

Saturday, January 19, 2013

While we were at the hospital, Jesse was updating the family on Google+ and ended up writing the birth story from his perspective that first night.  Here it is:

"I'm finally on a laptop so I will tell as much of the story as I can remember.

Liz started having some light contractions on Saturday night. They weren't too bad, just uncomfortable, and they were about 4 minutes apart. We found this somewhat off because they weren't what everyone explained to us, or what we read. 

They continued through Sunday and on Monday morning, his due date, liz woke up to contractions at around 7am. They continued to slowly grow more painful, but she was able to handle them. We called her doctor around 10:30am, and he told us to come into his office so he could check her out. 

When we got there he said she was 4 cm dilated and at station 0, about 95% effaced. Which was awesome, because we didn't know that she had made dilation progress. He had us go to the hospital and check in and see if they would admit us. We went into the Triage and she was about 5 cm dilated, and 100% effaced, and 100% sunny with the chance of meatballs.

Liz wanted to walk to help the process along, so we walked the hospital halls for about 30 minutes. At this point contractions were getting pretty bad, and she had to stop walking, and couldn't talk through them. At 2:15 pm we went back to the Triage, and she was at 5cm dilated. They decided to admit us, we went into the delivery room, and met our nurse. 

Contractions in the delivery room were really bad. Very quickly Liz decided she wanted the epidural. When in the Triage she wasn't sure if she would even need it. It happened very fast. Manageable contractions turned into "i want the epidural as soon as possible". In the immortal words of Ron Burgundy, "Boy, that escalated quickly, I mean, that really got out of hand, fast."

So she got the epidural after about an hour in the delivery room. The epidural going in was a little painful, but she did great, and always handles pain like a war vet. After that, things went SPLENDIDLY. She couldn't even feel her contractions for like an hour. No pain, just straight calm, comfortable, happy.  This was awesome to see, and just incredible what modern medicine can do.

Things were moving a little slowly, so they broke her water with a tree branch. Sorry when I write stories my imagination starts to run wild and I have a hard time being serious. Darn you ADD, or medically correct ADHD! They also gave her pitocin. 

Things were moving slowly so the doctor stepped out for about 30 minutes, came back, and out of NOWHERE, she was 10cm dilated. To which the doctor said "Time to push!, it's go time!" He wanted angry pushes. The doctor left the room, and our nurse started walking Liz through some pushes. She pushed once, did good work, and then on the next contraction she started pushing, and the nurse screamed "WAIT WAIT WAIT STOP". She called in the doctor immediately. 

Doctor came rushing in, and apparently with 1.2 pushes, he was ready to pop out. She pushed 3 more times, and the head was out. The doctor said she could have had him out in 5 minutes if they hadn't slowed her down and told her to really take it slow. 

It was incredible. Liz did amazing. There was pretty much no pain, and she popped him out really fast. 

So there he was, our son, purple-blue and a cone head. :)  He is adorable, makes dinosaur noises, and makes this noise with his lips that my pap pap used to do.

Turns out breast feeding is still a weird concept even after you see it for the first time.

Expect a HUGE amount of pictures from Liz. This will be amazing practice for her photography business, and we will all be the visual  beneficiary of her practice :)"

Harrison's Birth Story

Saturday, January 19, 2013

While I was pregnant, I loved reading birth stories and imagining all the different possibilities that could happen with my own labor. Harrison's birth was an amazing experience and I will definitely never forget it.

On Saturday the 5th, I started having mild contractions around 7pm.  They were painful but not unbearable, but they were consistently 4 minutes apart.  We were really unsure what to do since we had been told to call when they were that close together, but since they didn't hurt that badly, we didn't think it was really time.  These contractions stayed consistently 4 minutes apart, lasting 45-60 seconds for about 10 hours before I fell asleep.  I didn't sleep well at all for the maybe 4 hours I was able to get.  I woke with contractions the whole time.  When I got up the contractions were still there but had slowed to 5-7 minutes apart. They had increased in pain a bit, but still weren't anything I needed to breathe through.  I had these all day on Sunday, 5-7 minutes apart lasting 50 seconds to a minute and a half.  By the time I went to bed that night, I was exhausted from not being able to sleep and from feeling that pain for over 24 hours. We went to bed around 3am and I told Jesse I'd call my OB in the morning and was planning on asking to be induced or do something to get things progressing because I couldn't handle having contractions for another few days.

I woke up at 7 am on Monday the 7th (his due date!) because of the pain and started timing the contractions again. They were significantly more painful and were 4-5 minutes apart and averaged about 1 min 20 sec.  I showered and went upstairs and timed them for over an hour to make sure they were consistent.  At this point I was pretty sure we'd be in the hospital in a few hours and was just waiting a bit so Jesse could get as much sleep as he could before our eventful day.  They stayed the same so I called my doctor and woke Jesse.  We were told to come into the office in about an hour, so we threw the last few things in our bags and headed out.

We got to the OB's office and the nurses immediately noticed how quiet and unhappy I was compared to normal.  I was taken right back and my doctor checked me out.  I was dilated to a 4cm, 95% effaced and 0 station.  For the past few weeks I had been slowly progressing from -2 station to -1, and had been about 60% effaced but hadn't dilated at all.  Hearing that I was at a 4 was amazing.  It was really happening! He told us we could either go to the hospital and walk around there or walk a store and head in to the hospital in an hour or so. We chose to just go to the hospital and planned to walk as much as we could there.

We got put right into triage around 1pm and I was still at a 4cm, 95% and 0.  We were next to a girl who was clearly in a lot of labor pain who was puking very loudly every few minutes.  It was pretty hard to listen to and a bit scary to think I could be in that much pain soon.  We walked the halls for about an hour as Jesse timed the contractions - about 3 minutes apart.  They were painful and I had to slow down or stop during them, but it still wasn't terrible.  I started thinking that maybe I could go natural and hoped to hold out as long as I could. We went back to be checked and while she was checking me, she stripped my membranes.  I had dilated to a 5, so they admitted us and took us to the labor and delivery room.

After the membrane sweep, my contractions seemed to last 3-4 minutes and although they weren't too much more painful, it was really hard to handle how long they lasted.  I immediately started asking about an epidural since they had told me it might take an hour from when you ask to when you receive it.  They told me I needed 2 bags of fluid before they could give it to me, and started on those right away.  The contractions were getting pretty bad at this point and I just writhed in pain on the bed through them all.  The nurses seemed pretty surprised at how quiet I was during them.  I just kind of closed my eyes and dealt with the pain internally.  They ended up bringing the anesthesiologist right in while I was still on my first bag and got the epidural in so quickly.

It was pretty painful to get the epidural as they moved it around trying to find the center of my spine, but the relief was amazing.  I had an AMAZING epidural.  I was the perfect amount of numb.  I could still feel most of my legs but the pain was gone.  The epidural also slowly wore off as the meds leveled out and by the time I was pushing I could feel exactly what I needed to do without feeling any pain still. It was seriously awesome since I had worried so much about being able to feel enough to push.  Once I was pain free, I took a few minutes to teach Jesse how to use my camera so that we'd be able to get some pictures after he was born.

The time seemed to fly by and before we knew it, it was 6pm and my OB was coming in from the office.  He checked me and I had only dilated to a 6cm, so they decided to start me on Pitocin to get things progressing.  He came back in to check me around 6:30 after being on it for a half hour and he was trying to time the contractions but the monitors weren't picking them up very well. He finally said he'd just check really quick before heading back out, and we were all shocked to find out I was at a 10cm, 100% effaced and 0 station and it was time to push.  We had expected to have to wait another few hours so we were totally blown away that I dilated 4 cm in a half an hour!

He left and the nurse and Jesse held my legs and she told me to do a practice push.  I was able to feel the pressure and could feel what I was doing, so it was a great experience.  I pushed once and then we waited for another contraction.  She asked me to push again and after 2 seconds of pushing she yelled "STOP!" and told me to do everything I could not to push anymore since the baby was right there.  We looked at each other in shock that it was happening so quickly.  The doctor came right back in and told me to push when I felt the pressure but to only push a little bit.  He had me barely pushing 2 times and then told me one more and the baby would be out.  I pushed once more and a half push for the shoulders and I felt the baby slide right out and he immediately started crying.  I couldn't see anything and it was extremely surreal to be hearing these baby cries and knowing it was my son.  They put him on my chest and Jesse cut the cord.  My first thought was that he was super cone-headed and that he had my family's wonky ear, and I kept thinking "This is so weird. This is my baby." Then he peed all over me.

They took him over to be weighed and measured and Jesse took some pictures.  He was born at 6:42pm and 20.5 inches long and originally measured at 6 lbs 12.6 oz.  We had some weight discrepancies between 2 scales however, and it was later determined that he must have been born at 7lbs 7 oz.

 The doctor said we could have had him out in 5 minutes if he'd have let me really push.  I never would have imagined things happening so quickly and easily.  I could I have pushed out 5 more babies and been fine.  I am so grateful that I had such a good experience. I was able to start breastfeeding as they stitched up my 2nd degree tear and he ate for 40 minutes right from the start.  We got moved into our room around 8:30 pm and just fawned over him for most of the night.  It didn't hit me for awhile how tired I was after not really getting sleep since Saturday, but it's nearly impossible to sleep when you have an adorable baby next to your bed.  I did not want to let him go or put him down or stop touching his incredibly soft face.

The biggest surprise for me was how great I felt, and it feels like bragging to even talk about it.  I didn't have any breastfeeding pain or issues.  He has a great latch and I haven't been sore or engorged at all.  I also have almost no pain or soreness 'down there' aside from the stitches.  The most annoying part of the whole thing is just that I have to wear compression stockings 24/7 for 6 weeks and I have to inject myself 3 times a day with Heparin for my clotting disorder for the next 6 weeks as well. I have to inject it into my stomach and although it doesn't hurt, it leaves me sore and gives me a big bruise every time.  My stomach is covered in bruises, and the heparin gives me headaches, but if that's really my only pain from the whole experience, I'll take it!

Harrison at 1 Week

Monday, January 14, 2013

Harrison is an amazing baby and I am so grateful to have him in our little family.  I could stare at him all day long.  He makes the funniest faces all day and definitely keeps us entertained with his constantly changing expressions and his hilarious dinosaur noises.   He smiles more than I've ever seen any baby smile and especially pulls out the grins while breastfeeding. 

He's a great eater and a great sleeper, and he also will have a few hours each day of just awake alert adorableness.

He holds his head up for several minutes at a time, so he'll just lay on my chest and hold his head up and look around.

His favorite place to sleep is on my chest but we're working on moving him into the crib at night.  He sleeps really well at night and has definitely learned night from day.  He usually sleeps in 3-4 hour chunks at night, but the other night he gave me an awesome 6 hours of sleep between feedings. 

He loves the car and will sleep for hours in his carseat while we're at appointments or the store and driving around.

 He has started to spit up, so we have to keep him upright after he eats for awhile to avoid him puking, but by the end of the day we're usually both sticky and covered with milk.  He loves bath time if there's a warm washcloth on top of him, but he hates being changed because of how cold it is.  After avoiding any pee incidents at all since he was born, the other day I wasn't quite prepared while changing him and he peed all over his face and my hands as I tried to block the stream.  I'm sure we'll have many more accidents like that in the coming weeks. 

We sure do love our little guy! 

Diaper Bag Tutorial

Thursday, January 3, 2013

I have scoured the internet in search of a good diaper bag and almost bought the JJ Cole Satchel Diaper Bag. It wasn't in stock when I ordered it and I ended up deciding to cancel my order and look for something better.  I absolutely love and covet the Kate Spade Stevie Diaper Bag but at over $400, it's way over my budget for a bag.

I found this mini-tutorial for making your own version of the Kate Spade and thought I'd try my hand at it. My local JoAnns didn't have any striped fabric in the canvas material and I was impatient so I just got this cute grey and coral canvas fabric and some coral polka dot fabric for the lining.   I might still order some striped fabric online and make another one since I just love the look of the striped bag.

First I started cutting my pieces.  I don't usually use patterns and this tutorial wasn't too specific so I mostly kind of made it up as I went along.  The whole thing took me about 6 hours and really wasn't too hard to do. 
I messed around with sizing ideas until I had what I thought was a good size. The bag turned out a bit bigger than I thought it would but I think I will end up loving the size. 

I started out with 2 rectangle pieces in the canvas and 2 in the lining for the main sides of the bag. 
Mine measured 16" x 20".  Then I cut 4 pieces for the sides of the bag - 16" x 7", and 2 Pieces for the bottom - 20" by 7".  Pardon the cell phone pictures.

With the main pieces, I wanted a curved top so I really kind of just messed with it until I liked the look of the curves.  These curves were cut into all 4 main pieces.  

Now I had to plan for the pockets.  I wanted 2 bottle pockets on the outside of the bag. I laid some fabric over one of my bottles and kind of guesstimated the sizing and adding a little extra.  It's better to cut extra than too little. Mine ended up being big and in the end I cut those pockets down a few inches in height.  With the cuts the 2 pocket pieces (and lining) were sized about 8 1/2" x 7". 8 1/2" was for the width. 

When you sew on the bottle pockets, you have to add elastic to the top and you pleat the bottom so that the bottle is held in place. 

For the inside pockets I mostly used the leftover fabric pieces and laid them flat on the different lining sides until I thought there'd be enough pockets.  I ended up with 2 side pockets inside, 2 large pockets on one main panel inside and a large pocket on the other main panel. 

I don't know the measurements since I was really just using up my leftover fabric and lining.  Some of the pocket pieces are canvas and some are the polka dot. 

I wanted a zipper on top of my bag, so I just took 2 long pieces and sewed them to the zipper and to the lining at the top of the bag. 

That was pretty much all the pieces, and so then I had to sew them all together.  I wanted my lining to have clean edges so I essentially sewed 2 bags and then put them together.  I first sewed the inner pockets to the individual lining pieces and then sewed them together face to face so they'd have nice seams.  On the outside, I sewed the bottle pockets to the side panels and then sewed the panels all together face to face so I ended up with 2 bags.  I then sewed in the zipper to the lining at the top. Clearly I am bad at tutorials since I have no pictures for these steps! I then put the bags face to face and sewed along the top of the bag, making sure to leave a gap to turn the bag inside out.  

I sewed along the edge once it was turned to close the hole and to have nice flat finished edges. 
I later ended up taking out some stitches and adding a flat panel of cardboard covered in vinyl so the bottom would be firm and it would have a better shape.  I also created handles out of black vinyl and sewed them to the peaks of the main panels while adding some small pleats.  

Because I sewed the lining separate from the outside of the bag, the lining was too loose inside and so I tacked down the corners by hand sewing a few small stitches through the four corners to hold it in place.  

It is really roomy inside and it's perfect for holding baby stuff and camera equipment.  I'm using it for my hospital bag and it fits so much! I think it turned out pretty cute and I love the colors. 

Jesse clearly likes it too  and wanted to model it for me.  I think he was just trying to show off his muscles. :) 

PS - That cute polka dot bow was made by my sister Rosemary. She is awesome and super crafty. 

My Hospital Bag

Thursday, January 3, 2013

In preparing for our hospital stay, I have read countless "What I Packed" blogs over the past few months. 
 I thought I'd write up my own in case it could help anyone else pack their hospital bag. Here's what I packed:

1. Makeup Bag
2. Shampoo and Conditioner
3. Body Wash
4. Lotion
5. Makeup Remover Wipes
6. Hand Sanitizer
7. Mouthwash
8. Deodorant
9. Toothbrushes/Toothpaste (not pictured)
10. Chapstick (not pictured)
11. Brush/Hair ties (not pictured)
12. Makeup (not pictured)
13. Flip Flops for walking the halls (not pictured)

Camera Equipment:
1. Canon 5D Mk II (not pictured)
2. Canon 50mm f1.4 (not pictured)
3. Canon 85mm f1.8
4. Canon 24-70mm f2.8
5. Wide Angle and Macro attachments 
6. Lens Pen
7. Extra Memory Cards
8. Card Reader
9. Extra Battery
10. Battery Charger (not pictured)

Awhile back I made this camera equipment organizer to turn my purse into a camera bag.  
It's nice that it's removable so I am able to put it into my hospital bag and know my equipment is protected and organized. 

Here it is placed inside my Diaper Bag -tutorial coming soon!  I'm going to use my diaper bag for one of my hospital bags since it's so roomy. 

Feeding Supplies: 
1. Boppy
2. Lanolin
3. Breast Pads
4. Pacifiers
5. Nursing Tanks (not pictured)
6. Nursing Sports Bras (not pictured)

1. Granola Bars
2. Jerky for Jesse
3. Change for Vending Machine (not pictured)
4. Gum (not pictured)

Baby Supplies:
1. Receiving Blanket
2. Warmer Blanket

3. Going home outfit with warm hat

4. Onesie for going home
5. Socks
6. Mittens 

7. Really warm snowsuit for the ride home

Additional Items Not Pictured:
1. Laptop/Charger
2. Cell phones/Chargers
3. Paperwork
4. Clothes for Jesse (shorts, hoodies, t-shirts, etc)
5. Clothes for me 
(stretch pants, cardigans to wear with nursing tanks, t-shirts, socks)

That is just about it and it's all packed up and ready to go! We'll see when this guy decides to make an appearance. I've had contractions on and off for a couple days now although they aren't at all painful.  I hadn't had any up until this point, so I'm hoping they'll eventually turn into real labor. Guess we'll see! My biggest hope was for my siblings to get to see him before they went back to Utah for another 6 months, but Rose and Jon go back tomorrow so it doesn't look like that will happen.  Other than that wish, I am fine with him coming whenever.  I've had such an easy pregnancy, thankfully, and haven't really hit the point where I'm "DONE" yet, so I'm cool if he takes his time.  I know things will change a ton and so I'm doing just great waiting until he is ready and getting a bunch of stuff done in the mean time. 

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