Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Getting to know her

Elinor is lovely.

She makes soft squawking noises in her sleep but wakes up shrieking like a banshee - just once so you have a heart attack in the middle of the night.  Then her cry turns into that of a cat in heat.  Not the most lady-like, but very amusing all the same.

She slept through the night for her first two nights... and then my milk came in and she decided eating was way more fun than sleeping.
She prefers our bed to her crib and my arms to our bed. 

She likes the swing and just might live in it for the next few months.

She as born with a *little* birth mark on her left leg, which we were told would either fade or get bigger as she gets older.  Either way, it's not a danger so we think it's perfect on her.

She has dainty little hands and freaky long monkey toes.

She is perfect.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Elinor's birth

The timing of Elinor's birth must have been divinely influenced.  That's the only way I can describe it.  With Collin's surgery looming overhead, I was sure that the baby would come before it was all behind us. Thankfully, she had the good grace to wait until all of Collin's medical things were sorted out (barely though, I went into labor as he was leaving for the doctor's office for his last appointment!).  Sammy was up with fever and vomiting the night before and that morning, but the fever broke and he started holding food down just after I went into labor (though not before I got to experience the joy of cleaning up vomit through a contraction - whee!). 

So here's the birth story in a nutshell:  I woke up feeling the same as normal, but started to get mild contractions a few hours later.  Collin went to the doctor's office at 10:30 to have his catheter removed.  By the time he returned a couple hours later I was definitely in labor, though it was still the early stages.  The midwives came over around 3:00 and were surprised to find me fully effaced and already dilated to a 7 (which turned to an 8 as she was checking).  After that it was just a matter of waiting for the contractions to get strong and close enough to finish the job.  Once they did (active labor), everything happened very quickly.  Twenty minutes later, I found myself with a baby in my arms!

This birth fell somewhere between Isaac's and Samuel's on the pain scale.  It hurt a lot more than Sammy's birth but nowhere near as bad as Isaac's.  I was ordered on bed rest for the three days following the birth, but I doubt I could have walked around much anyway.  I'm glad that everything happened so quickly and that my midwives were so incredible.  I'm especially glad that everything worked out the timing of the birth. Thanks, Elinor, for waiting for Daddy to get better!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Elinor is born!!!

Elinor was born in our home today at 5:14 PM.  She was 19.5" long and weighed 7 lbs 5 oz.  Maxine did amazing and thankfully the labor was very quick.  Apparently she wanted to be a summer baby.  Both mom and daughter are resting in bed now.  Elinor has been nursing like a champ and she has a very loud cry when she's angry but is otherwise very calm and sleepy.  She looks a lot like her mom's maternal grandmother so far but babies do tend to change a lot their first few days.  Welcome to the family Elinor!!!

Friday, September 14, 2012


Collin has had a very medical month.  A few weeks ago he went in for an endoscopy to check his hiatal hernia.  The results showed no hernia (hooray!), but a rather gnarly case of acid reflux (boo!).  He was prescribed antacids for basically the rest of his life.  Unfortunately, he was unable to take them for very long before more fun medical stuff hit.  He has a minor surgery scheduled for next Wednesday to fix a stricture in his urinary tract (i.e., blockage from scar tissue, supposedly from years of bike riding in his youth).  This past week has been extremely difficult for him, but he's borne it like a champ.  Here's a picture of him from this Wednesday before the procedure to determine what was wrong with him (it was done in the OR, hence the cap and gown):
This is Collin's birthday cake.  He requested a blueberry and lemon cake, so I made a lemon cake with fresh blueberries in the batter, filled it with blueberry curd, and frosted with a zippy lemon Swiss meringue buttercream.  Yeah, it was good.

Maxine is 38 weeks pregnant!  I'm uncomfortable, unwieldy, and in a constant state of aching, but I'm otherwise doing fine.  I vacillate between hoping this baby stays put until after Collin's surgery (which will happen when I turn 39 weeks) and recovery, and just wanting this kid out at all costs (which would include not being waited on hand and foot by my husband).  In the end, I guess the former option is the better one, so you keep your fingers crossed and I'll keep my legs crossed!
I've also recently discovered pumpkin doughnuts, and they have not only rocked my world but they've caused me to gain 4 pounds in one week.  And I don't regret a single calorie!

Isaac is (still) learning to poo on his own.  We are currently working on Phase 4 of potty training, wherein Isaac now has the responsibility of choosing when to go to the toilet (we used to tell him when to go poo each day and he did that just fine).  Accidents earn him extreme punishments and successes earn him extreme rewards.  It's been a week of this and he's gotten a few punishments to start with, but he's had two successes in a row.  Here's to hoping this works!
Isaac is really getting into his pretend play.  He makes up elaborate stories and songs to go with the elaborate monster truck tracks he creates.  Also, he's discovered the joy of fort building, which puts our house in a near-constant state of disaster.  Worth it for his happiness and creativity, right?  Right??

Isaac is not going to preschool this year, but we just enrolled him in a gymnastics class.  I'm very impressed with the teacher and location.  Isaac is a little reticent at first, but he eventually will join the group and have fun with it.  We've only been two times, but already I see him getting more comfortable and enjoying it more.  Samuel is DESPERATE to join in the fun, so we might sign him up for the toddler's class after the new year when medical bills have settled down.

Samuel is still the same little spitfire punk that we love and adore.  He talks all the time and with much fluency for his age.  People are generally surprised and impressed by how much he talks, but that's only when he deigns to speak in front of others.  His newly acquired linguistic ability has made playing with Isaac much easier and more enjoyable for both of them, so now they spend most of their days playing together with only minimal fighting. 

Samuel remains, as ever, a complete goofball.  Seriously, this kid was born a class clown!  He will do anything to make us all laugh, and he's very good at it.
We've been watching Avatar: The Last Airbender as a family for the past several months.  Both boys love it and get really into it, but Isaac especially enjoys this special time with us.  We'll be finishing the series tonight, which is a little sad...

So now we're just preparing ourselves for the arrival of our baby.  We have everything we need - a new mattress, clothes, car seat, bottles, diapers and even new pacifiers.  This baby WILL love the pacifier!  And bottles!  And sleeping!  Our boys were too good for all of those things...

Museum time!

While in San Diego we took advantage of our Thanksgiving Point memberships and went to a few museums in Balboa Park for free (something about belonging to a museum network).  While the model train museum was plenty awesome, the Science Center was the real highlight.  So much hands-on fun stuff for the kids to do, and we parents were just as entertained.  Not much more to say about it, but these pictures should speak for themselves. 

Monday, September 10, 2012

And we're back!

After a little hiatus due to web hosting blah blah blah, we're back and better than ever!  All our old posts are gone for the time being, but they'll slowly reappear as Collin has time to add them back in.  You know, just in case you were hoping to see what we were up to two years ago.  In the meantime, let us move forward by moving backward!  Here's a quick little summary of our summer:

Isaac graduated preschool!  Personally, I think that all these little graduation ceremonies at just about every grade level are silly.  But, what can you do?  Isaac was in a rather silly mood during the ceremony...

That's no zoom lens - I'm the one parent sitting up on the bleachers with my kid because he was too terrified to sit up there without me.  But, we eventually worked our way up to the podium and he stood tall and proud for Mommy to take his picture.

We got a kiddie pool for the boys this summer and only managed to really use it once. But we made it count!

Isaac and Sammy are just the best of friends, especially when over-sized boxes are involved.

We went to the Museum of Ancient Life (i.e., the dinosaur museum) with cousins and had a grand old time running around terrorizing the other patrons.   Oh, and they liked the megalodon, because sharks are cool.

What kid doesn't love blowing bubbles?  I just love these pictures of Isaac having a blast with it.

And then there's Samuel, who takes the task very seriously...

The boys love wrestling with their daddy.  Any chance they get, they're trying their best to knock Collin over or else get flipped around by him.

A few other summer highlights without pictures:
We went backyard camping one night. The boys LOVED it and slept pretty well.  Collin and I, on the other hand, had a much less restful night on account of the windstorm doing its best to blow our tent away.  Oh, and I was pregnant and uncomfortable.  But the boys had fun, so that's good...

We took a two-week trip to California in the beginning of August.  It wasn't quite the relaxing vacation we were hoping for.  Collin worked most of the time, our van broke down while in San Diego the first week and the repair was very costly, and it was ridiculously hot (have I mentioned that I'm really pregnant?).  We did manage to have a little fun, though.  There was an awesome trip to Sea World (separate post on that), some museum time at Balboa Park, a day at the beach in which we discovered that Isaac is officially in love with water but Samuel is not and Maxine's skin does indeed excel at burning, and some good old fashioned quality time spent with family and friends. 

My baking frenzy continued through the summer.  No need to list them all here, but rest assured I gained much face weight from it.

And that about brings us up to date!  I'll try to get more on in the next few days and be more regular from there.  It's good to be back!

Sea World

Okay, so I thought I had more fun pictures of our visit to Sea World, but it turns out I'm pretty lame with the camera usage when I'm on vacation.  Alas, you'll have to be satisfied with these shots:

The boys lasted a little over half the day before deciding they'd had enough of the heat.  They did love the dolphin show and still ask to watch videos of it.  As a bonus souvenir, I got a wicked shirt tan from the day!