05 July 2015

Pump Master

In my previous post I mentioned that I LOVE my Medela Pump-in-Style double-electric breast pump. I received this pump after I had William so it's an older version.
Isn't that bag très chic?
The bag holds the pump mechanism and has two compartments. The left compartment is a cooler: put an ice pack in there and the expressed milk stays good until you get home and can put the milk in the fridge or freezer. The right compartment is for storing the other parts of the pump.
I love that the pumping pressure can be dialed down or up. The first time I pumped after having Matthew I started on the lowest setting. He's now almost five months old and I usually do the medium setting or a bit higher. By the time I was finished breastfeeding William (14 months) I was pumping on the highest setting. The variable settings help match the baby's sucking efficiency for more consistent feedings.
I didn't have any issues pumping with William but for some reason it hasn't been as smooth-sailing for me this time. Maybe it's because Matthew usually only nurses from one side at a time, I don't know for sure.
The first time I tried pumping after Matthew was born was about a week before I went back to work. I needed to start building up a supply of expressed milk to give to the boy's daycare provider. I thought it would be like riding a bike - easy. But it wasn't. I started feeling pressure in my chest and I was having trouble breathing; I had to stop after only a few minutes. I didn't stop trying to pump but the anxiety kept happening. I tried deep breaths, watching TV or a movie to distract myself, or keeping Matthew right next to me while I pumped. It didn't really make a difference. I asked my doc about it and she said it sounded like a small anxiety attack. I thought that was strange since it's not like I hadn't pumped before. I think I was having anxiety issues since pumping meant going back to work. Don't get me wrong, I love my job. But with a new baby, a toddler, and my master's program, adding work to the mix seemed like too much.
Luckily, it was fine! There is an extra office at work where I can pump. I just have to make myself do it. I get in the middle of my work and have a hard time making the time to pump. That's good for work but not good for my milk production. I missed a few days which meant that my body stopped producing as much milk during those morning hours. Well, less milk means less for Matthew and that's bad. 
(Side story: for a few weeks there were two student secretaries and me working the same shift with only two computer spots at the front desk. I would go work at the computer in the back office which was the best. When I needed to pump I could just close the door and keep working while I pumped. Less guilt for not working while pumping! There were a few occasions when I needed to pump twice at work and it wasn't a problem because I was still working while I was pumping. If I could just work in the back office all the time I would be one happy momma. But I guess I have to work the front desk, too. Wouldn't want the students and faculty to miss my happy face, right?)
In an effort to get my milk production back to what it should be, I have implemented a new routine (with the help of later work hours). I am pumping up to three times per day. Ideally, I will pump first thing in the morning BEFORE I feed Matthew. I can usually get 6-8oz first thing but today I got 10! Yay :) I don't work until 10am so I nurse Matthew right before we leave the house. I pump at work at around 11:30am. I feed Matthew right when we get home around 2:30pm. He eats every 1.75 to 2.5 hours for the rest of the day. If he is sleeping when my feeding reminder on my phone goes off, I will pull out the pump and get a third session in. Matthew nurses for the last time each night around 1am. Rarely he will wake up in the middle of the night; usually he sleeps until 8:30am or 9am.
Since I started this routine, I have been getting more milk during my pumping sessions. I don't freeze my milk since what I pump during one day Matthew will eat in the next day or two. I use Lansinoh storage bags which can be frozen.
I do like to have a few extra bags at home, just in case. I take my pump with me when we go to Ogden to visit Tyson's family. His parents will often watch the boys so Tyson and I can go on a date and I like to have milk ready for Matthew. I take my pump over the weekends to keep up my schedule. That session first thing in the morning is really vital. Since Matthew only feeds on one side at a time it helps my physical comfort to pump before he eats. I don't have to worry about him not getting enough if I feed him after I pump. Babies are more efficient than breast pumps are so he's all good.
I am glad to have an excellent pump with all the fancy features to make my life easier. And I'm really grateful for a boss who never makes me feel like I have to choose between pumping and my job. Seriously, my boss is the best boss on the planet. In the universe. For all time.

04 July 2015

The Second Time Around

You wouldn't think things would be much different in the time between my two pregnancies but I'm starting to notice which things have made my recovery and transition to motherhoodx2 easier. I made a list of my "top 5" must-have baby items, 4 of which I had last time around and have grown to appreciate all over again.

1. iBaby Feed Timer
This iPhone app is a wonder-tool. 
You can time feedings, including on multiple sides. 
You can track the number and type of dirty diapers your baby is having. I tracked this for probably the first 2 months but gave it up as it was just one to many things to track.
You can track when you pump/express milk and how much you get from one or both breasts. This feature is important to me since I miss two feedings while I'm at work and only get to pump once. (More about pumping in another post)
The app tells you when the next feeding is (approximately); you can determine time between feedings either as an average or as a set time. I started with the average but as Matthew started sleeping through the night those long stretches messed up the average for during the day. Now I have it set for every 2 hours but sometimes he only gets to 1.5 or 1.75 before he's ready to eat again during the day.
There is a log tab which will show you 1) all breast feedings, 2) diaper changes, 3) pumping times/amounts, 4) bottle feedings, 5) baby growth measurements.
There is a summary tab which shows you like average feed length, average time between all feeds, number of feeds, and number of diapers per day, for the last 7 days, and the last 28 days. 
There's even graphs of the data! Not a joke. There are four graphs: 1) timeline - shows (on a 24-hour scale) when each event took place; 2) summary - line graph which plots events over time; 3) bottle - line graph showing amount of bottle feedings; and 4) growth - line chart showing the baby's physical development (I input these measurements from Matthew's regular doctor's appointments).
After I had William I was just writing down all my feedings on a piece of paper and guesstimating how long each feeding was since sometimes I was too out of it to notice a specific start and end time. This app changed everything for me. I always have my phone with me so I can log each feeding to a more accurate length. The craziest thing is waking up in the morning with a vague recollection of feeding Matthew in the middle of the night and I'll check my app and I had tracked the feeding while mostly asleep. Matthew still sleeps in his bassinet next to my bed and he's old enough now to have learned side-lying feeding WHICH IS THE BEST.
This app saved my brain. I had so much going on after this birth since I was still in school and it's so nice to have an app remind me, "Hey, it's probably time to feed your baby". The little alerts also remind me to pump while I'm at work, but more on that later.

2. Medela Pump-in-Style Advanced breastpump
I received this pump after I had William and I love it. I have the older model so that carry bag is less stylish but the pump itself is a marvel to me. The bag has a thermos-esque compartment to keep milk cold after I pump. The pump suction is highly adjustable so I never have to deal with pain.

3. Baby blankets
Matthew used to spit up a ton. I mean, he still spits up a lot, but it's not nearly as bad as it was. I had to switch him to only feeding on one side at a time to help reduce the amount he was spitting up. Because of his tendency to spit up a lot, and not always right after a feeding, burp cloths were totally useless. I have to keep a full-size baby blanket with him at all times, just in case. We use all of the blankets we made/got for William and the blankets we made/got for Matthew so I don't have to do laundry just for blankets.

4. Johnson's breast pads
I will never EVER use another brand of breast pads. I don't care that I have to order these pads from Amazon because my Walmart stopped carrying them. It's worth it. The material is so much smoother than any other brand I have tried. If there is one thing not to skimp on it's the item kept nearest to one of the most sensitive parts of the female body. These pads were a god-send right when Matthew was born. He was tongue-tied which made nursing, well, horrible. He wasn't latching correctly so it was painful and I ended up cracked and bleeding and bruised. Remember what I said about that area being very sensitive? You definitely don't want to suffer the issues I did without a little bit of relief. It got so bad I would flinch when my app alarm would go off to feed Matthew: I wasn't ready for the pain. Luckily I mentioned our issues to Matthew's pediatrician at his two-week appointment and the doc discovered Matthew's tongue was tied and fixed it. The feeding right after the appointment was a million times better. I was so grateful.

5. Bassinet
Tyson's mom let us use this blue bassinet when William was born and now again with Matthew. The bassinet can be removed from the base, which has wheels for easy movement. I slept on our awesome couch for probably the first six weeks of Matthew's life. It was easier to set up my stuff out in the front room and not worry about waking up Tyson while doing feedings and diaper changes in the middle of the night. I put the bassinet sans base right on the floor next to the couch, propped up with a flat pillow on one end to keep Matthew at an angle (again, to reduce spitting up). Now we are back in our master bedroom and I keep Matthew's bassinet next to my side of the bed. He is going to outgrow it soon and then I'm not sure what I'll do. I'm worried about putting him in the same room as William. I guess I can't avoid that forever. In the meantime I'm enjoying side-lying nursing in the middle of the night and first thing in the morning. I can also rock the bassinet back and forth on the base to rock Matthew back to sleep if he gets a bit fussy.

If I were to make a list of things I thought every mom should definitely have for her new baby, these five items would be the list. You don't need all the fancy shtuff for your baby. I know every mom has to find her own groove and I'm glad the only "new" thing on this list was the feeding app that I cannot live without.

26 June 2015

Breastfeeding in a house of boys

Matthew is four months old and we've just gotten the hang of side-lying nursing, which is my favorite nursing position because then I get to take naps :)
When I am at home, and we don't have company, I don't use a cover or a blanket to "cover up" while I nurse my baby. Sure, most of the time I use a blanket to keep him warm but I don't use the blanket as some kind of shield. 
William is a very smart 3.5 year old who has learned that Matthew only drinks "Mommy's milk", as he calls it. I've explained to William that Matthew is too little to drink "William's milk", ya know, normal milk. 
I think it is very sweet that William is learning about breastfeeding in this healthy way. Some people get so worried about nursing around boys or men because breasts are viewed only sexually when their natural purpose is to produce milk to feed another human. 
I'm all for women being able to feed their babies wherever and whenever they want. I would prefer to be in a secluded spot to feed Matthew, rather than out in public. When Matthew and I flew to California I fed him twice while sitting on the floor of the handicap stall in the ladies room of the Phoenix airport. It was a really busy day and Matthew's not great at eating under a cover so I opted for the only privacy I could find. Was it ideal? No. Was it as gross as some ladies would have you believe? No. Now would I have sat on the floor of a nasty truck stop bathroom? HECK NO.
Anyways, back on point. Sometimes when Matthew starts to cry William will say "Mom, Matthew needs your milk." I'm glad that I can teach my boys about breastfeeding in a safe, healthy way without it being awkward. Isn't it amazing what children can comprehend at such a young age?

30 May 2015


Six years ago I couldn't swallow pills. My parents had tried all the tricks on me when I was a kid but nothing worked. In 2009 I got home from my six-week study abroad in the UK, went through a nasty break-up, joined a community choir, and through all the stress of life ended up with some weird throat infection/inflammation that had to be treated with steroids. Steroids don't come in liquid. 
I had a choice: suffer through the endless pain and risk my voice, or learn to swallow pills.
Luckily, the steroid pills were tiny. The tiniest pills I had ever seen. And I did it. I learned to swallow pills.
Nowadays it's pretty standard routine to swallow Tylonel, Ibuprofen, my prenatals, or other vitamins. The way I swallow pills is to take a mouthful of water, tilt my head back, drop the pill in, and swallow. I don't know why, but this works for me.
After I gave birth to Matthew, one of the nurses brought me some pain meds and questioned my pill-taking technique. She told me that tilting my head back closes off my throat which can make swallowing more difficult. I didn't care until I needed to start taking some meds that were capsules, not pills. Capsules float. I was determined and now can take those meds without issue.
Tonight I swallowed THREE pills at once!
I'm not sure why but every time I swallow a pill I feel so proud of myself. It shouldn't be such a big deal. But after so many years of struggling and feeling dumb for not being able to swallow pills, I feel more like an adult each time I can do it successfully (which is still not every time, but mostly). 

01 March 2015

Matthew's Birth Story

Ever since I had William my memory has been terrible. It's like persistent, long-term pregnancy brain. For this reason I made sure to keep notes on my phone during the labor process because I didn't want to forget anything. If I was too distressed to make a note, I made Tyson do it.

Spoilers: he's super cute and all I want to do all day long is cuddle him.

Wednesday, February 11
My last day of work! This time around I just kept right on working until I knew for sure this baby was going to be born. I got to attend the second day of BYU's Office Professional's Association Conference (OPAC). My boss was on the publicity committee and I helped out by designing this year's conference booklet. Oh, yeah. It was pretty amazing to see everyone using the booklet I designed. SO COOL. I made sure to grab an extra for my portfolio.
My in-laws came down and took us out to dinner at Outback Steakhouse (I talked about this in another post). We had a great time and then they took William home with them to Ogden. It was weird to say goodbye to him knowing that the next time I saw him he'd be a big brother.
I got my hospital bag ready and tried to work on some homework. Finally, after midnight, I gave up and tried to sleep.

Thursday, February 12
6:00am - called the hospital to confirm that they still have a bed for me. We got up and got the car loaded. I forgot to eat breakfast, which was dumb. Really dumb. 
6:30am - checked in at the hospital. Now we are in our room waiting to answer all the in-take questions.
7:15am - the nurses have not been able to get an IV started in my arm. My veins are notoriously unhelpful but I drank a ton of water yesterday to try and help with that. The nurses have tried three times in my right forearm with lots and LOTS of fishing. It was finally too painful and I lost it. I was already freaking out about today because of the Pitocin and I just can't handle more complications like this. So, they are calling in an anesthesiologist to get my IV in.
8:27am - Pitocin is started. The anesthesiologist tried to put an IV on the underside of my right forearm and failed. So, where did the IV end up?
Yeah, my neck. That was probably the scariest thing ever. The nurses had me lie on my left side and they tipped my bed way back so my feet were higher than my head. The doc used Lidocaine to numb my neck so it wasn't super painful but it was really freaky and I was trying not to cry. The doc kept telling me to breathe so I wouldn't hyperventilate. It wasn't exactly the smooth-sailing labor prep I had been expecting. I'm now afraid to turn my head.
8:41am - my doc, Dr. Whiting, came in and broke my water. I wasn't expecting that since with William my doc didn't break my water until I was ready to push. 
9:30am - I'm having contractions now. They're pretty strong. I'm waiting for the nurses to come and check me again. PS Losing amniotic fluid slowly (like, a bit with each contraction) is super gross. I really don't like it, at all. Every time I have a contraction I end up saying "Ew, ew, ew, ew, ew" rather than some other exclamation of pain. Tyson thinks it's funny. I think he's wrong.
9:32am - my IV got pinched so a bunch of alarms went off. The nurses fixed it. I thought I had to wait to get my epidural but the nurses said I can have it anytime. I do have to finish the current bag of saline though. Now that the IV isn't pinched, that should only take a few more minutes.
10:40am - the epidural is in! It hurt more this time than I remember with William. The nurses had me on my right side for a bit but my blood pressure started dropping and I felt like I was going to faint. Now I'm on my left side. I'm at 5 cm and 80% effaced.
11:40am - the epidural isn't as strong as it was with William. Last time my lower body was totally dead: no feeling whatsoever. This time it just feels like my legs are asleep. The nurse came to check my cervix and I'm at 9cm. That is a 4 cm change in only 40 minutes. This must be a trend with me. With William I went from 3 cm to 9.5 cm in an hour once the epidural was in. My body just does not like labor. 
11:50am - fully dilated. Nurse is calling Dr. Whiting to come down so I can start pushing.
12:15pm - started pushing. (Thoughts while pushing: I don't think I'm doing as well pushing as I did with William. I'm definitely feeling everything a lot more because the epidural isn't very strong. Yeah, this is a lot more painful than I remember. Matthew is a little stuck and his head is tucking back inside. Doc just told a nurse to get forceps just in case. We're having a hard time tracking baby's heartbeat so doc is having me push, even not during a contraction. Doc is helping me get baby out by pushing at the top of my stomach. His head is out and now we're working on his shoulders. William just kind of fell out at this point but I'm having to really push to get this baby out.)
12:22pm - He's here! After only seven minutes of pushing. Seriously. Dr. Whiting had Tyson cut the cord which he didn't get to do with William. The nurses wrapped the baby in a towel and put him on my chest immediately. As soon as I had him in my arms I knew he was supposed to be Matthew. It was one of the names on our list but Tyson and I couldn't agree. So as I held our brand-new son I said to Tyson, "He's Matthew. Is that okay?" That's the time to name your kid because no way is your hubby going to say no after you just pushed a human out of you. There's a free tip for you pregnant ladies ;)

The nurses let me hold Matthew for a long time. Then they took him and cleaned him up while my doc helped me deliver the placenta and he checked to see if I needed any repair work (i.e. did I tear and do I need stitches?) No repair work needed! Hurray! I had an episiotomy with William and had to have stitches. No stitches means my recovery will be much easier. Since I didn't need any repair work the nurses gave Matthew right back to me for skin-to-skin. Tyson didn't get a chance to hold Matthew for quite a long time. I asked Tyson if he wanted to hold Matthew but he said that he knew skin-to-skin with mom and baby is really important and he didn't want to interfere. What a good daddy!
By the time we were ready to move into our recovery room I had nursed Matthew and I had the feeling totally back in my legs. I was actually feeling pretty freaking fantastic but the nurses still had to "officially" help me into a wheelchair and wheel me down the hall to recovery.
It was really important to me that Matthew be wrapped in the blanket shown here and wear the hat I brought, not the ones provided by the hospital. The hat was made by my Grandma Pat (my mom's stepmom) and the blanket was made by my Grandma Sumsion (my mom's mom who died in 2009). Grandma Sumsion had made a ton of these baby blankets and when she died my aunt Sherry took them all to save and give out to new grandbabies in the family. William and Matthew both have one now and it is so special to me. I'm not a very sentimental person when it comes to stuff but these blankets are different. I still have the blanket my grandma made for me when I was a baby.
I had to keep the IV in my neck for a long time which was annoying. But I was thrilled to finally get it off even though the tape left a sore on my neck.

I felt really great on Thursday. It wasn't until Friday that I began to have some more pain. No one had warned me about the uterine contractions brought on by nursing. I mean, I knew about them but no one told me that those contractions get more painful with each pregnancy. It felt like I was in labor all over again! It was really nice to stay in the hospital until Saturday and just hang out with Tyson and Matthew. We watched lots of HGTV and the Food Network, much to Tyson's dismay and my delight. My sister Jane, my boss, Tyson's mom, and my brother all came to visit us in the hospital. We loved having visitors.
On Friday some ladies came by to take Matthew's newborn photos. It's a separate company who comes in and takes the photos. They give you a link so you can view the photos and then you can purchase them, if you like them. We did it with William and I knew we'd do it again with Matthew. It was a different company this time but I love the photos they took. And I love that they included Tyson and me in the photos this time.

Tyson's mom brought William to see us later on Friday. He seemed so huge! It's like he grew a few inches and gained a ton of weight in only two days. They brought us some flowers and treats. It made my heart so happy to see my boys together.
Going home on Saturday was awesome. Except that my doc prescribed me Percocet, which does absolutely nothing for me. So all I had to manage my pain was Ibuprofen and some other meds I had at the house already. It was NOT ideal but I did okay.
We are so happy to have Matthew in our family. I've been very blessed to receive lots of help in many ways. I have only had a few moments of crazy, hormonal crying. After William I was so tired but this time recovery was easier and I've been able to manage things better. 

Matthew is two weeks old now and things get a little better every day. I'm looking forward to being done with school so I can spend all my time outside of work being with my boys.

28 February 2015

Introducing Matthew Elwood Remy!

Matthew Elwood Remy was born February 12, 2015 at 12:22pm at Timpanogos Regional Hospital in Orem, Utah. He was 8 lbs 6 oz and 21 inches. This post is all about Matthew. Another post will be his birth story.

He has blondish hair and bluish eyes. He has way less hair than William had but Matthew sports the same cute button nose that William had. Matthew has the same little chicken-legs that William had. He has ZERO butt fat so I feel like I'm wiping his bones when I clean his bum and that freaks me out a bit. Matthew had newborn rash which went away after a few days. His feet are big and he's got monkey toes.
Matthew is a good little baby. He breastfeeds pretty well but it wasn't that way at the beginning. Matthew was having a hard time latching on which meant I was having issues like clogged ducts and cracking/bleeding. It was not a fun time. Turns out, he was tongue tied which meant that he couldn't stick out his tongue and get a good latch. Our pediatrician clipped Matthew's frenulum (the thing under your tongue) which was sad but Matthew was able to eat much better at the next feeding.

Before his two-week appointment, I noticed a hard bump on his left shoulder near his neck. I asked his doctor about it and, ta-da, Matthew had broken his left clavicle during delivery. I freaked out a bit since I had never heard of that but my doc (and Google) assured me that this is fairly common with larger babies or babies who get stuck in the birthing canal. Plus, it's definitely better than the alternative: emergency c-section. Yikes! The hard bump is like an internal cast, called a callus. It will dissolve on its own and Matthew will not suffer any long-term issues from the break.
William is great with Matthew. He loves it when Matthew "looks" at him. Sometimes when Matthew is crying William will start singing "Wheels on the Bus" to him. It's so cute! William loves to hold Matthew and loves to kiss his head. He also likes to "pet" Matthew's head. I'm so glad William is good at being soft with Matthew because I was pretty worried about my little strong-man trying to play with his fragile little brother.

We've had lots of visitors come to see us and it's been great. We're planning to bless Matthew towards the end of March so my mom (and maybe my dad) can come back out from California. 
 Tyson's mom and Matthew in the hospital
 Tyson's brother Jacob came to see us at home
My sister Jane came to see us twice in the hospital

11 February 2015

'Twas the Night Before My Induction...

And I'm supposed to be focused on getting homework done and I just can't. My in-laws came down to pick up William and they took us out to dinner at Outback Steakhouse. YUM. While we were at dinner the hospital called to give me my call time: 6:30am. It's so early! I have to call them at 6:00am to make sure they still have a bed for me. Now that I have a set time I'm feeling anxious. And tired. I really just want to sleep and I should. But I so wanted to have my work done so I would have a few days totally homework free post-baby. 
It was hard for me to say goodbye to William tonight. I gave him hugs and kisses and told him that I loved him a lot. And I really, really do. I still don't know how I will possibly love Baby Remy #2 as much as I love William. But everyone keeps telling me it will just happen and I'm banking on that.
I'm nervous about being induced with Pitocin since I've mostly heard only awful things about it. The hospital is not allowed to give me Cervadil or Cytotec (cervical ripening pills) since I'm not 41 weeks yet.
I'm going to try and get at least one of my two remaining assignments for the week done tonight. Both assignments are papers and one of them I already have all my quotes pulled from the articles. The other one I haven't really started but I'm thinking it'll be easier to do. I've emailed all three of my professors to let them know what's up and they've all assured me that I should not worry about deadlines. All three classes have group projects going on and my groups have been so helpful and kind. I've truly been blessed. I didn't think my professors or fellow students would be so understanding, especially since my school isn't BYU anymore. 
My visiting teachers have got meals all set up and the lady I did scouts with texted me today asking about meals even before I had heard from my visiting teachers. That really meant a lot to me since I don't really have many friends in our ward. It was nice to know that she was thinking about me and my family. 
Okay, back to homework. And double-checking my hospital bag. Then a shower. Then sleep.

10 February 2015


I guess even with all those contractions, this is my m.o: overdue. It's really okay. I'm sure if this were the middle of summer and not the most mild February ever I would be singing a different tune. Much like I was with William. 
I had an appointment last night to be checked again to see if I'm making any progress. Unless you call going back to 2cm progress, then no, I'm not making any great strides here. The good news is that my doc is going to let me know today if I am supposed to show up at the hospital tomorrow evening or Thursday morning. It really depends on which way they want to get things going. If they want to do Cytotech (a cervical ripening pill) then I'll go in tomorrow evening. If they want to do just Pitocin (I HOPE NOT) then I'll go in Thursday morning. But either way, a baby will be here before Friday. And I am trying to do homework like a mad woman. All three of my classes have group projects going plus other assignments which is a bit intense.
William is starting his new preschool schedule today. He has been going Wednesday and Friday mornings and now he'll be going Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday afternoons. We switched him so that he could do three days a week and attend the adaptive P.E. class which is only on Tuesdays and Thursdays. When I go back to work post-baby, William and baby will go to daycare in the mornings while I work and then William will go off to school. I tried to explain the new schedule to William...I don't think he got any of it. But that's okay! He's going to love going three times a week and I'm going to love him doing a P.E. class. Oh, you want to run my kid around? Yes, please!
Also, yesterday Tyson sent me to get a manicure and pedicure at the mall. It was awesome. Now my toes are a fun pink/orange color and that color looks extra fun today since I'm wearing my mint open-toed flats. After my mani/pedi I made a quick stop at Bath & Body Works to pick up some happy-smelling hand sanitizer. I can't stand the regular alcohol stuff. Bath & Body Works is always running sales and they just happened to have one for their mini-hand sanitizer: 5 for $5. Sweet. I got two "White Lily & Lime", two "Pure Paradise", and one "Noir for Men". I figured Tyson might not go for the flowery scents but the Noir scent is tres sexy. Especially for a hand sanitizer.

05 February 2015

An Irrational Fear

I keep thinking I'm going to suddenly and unexpectedly give birth to my baby outside of the hospital, like in a bathroom, my shower, or my car on the way to the hospital. I don't know what it is about Utah but there have been WAY too many stories on the news about ladies racing to the hospital to give birth and not quite making it. Here's a fun, family history-type story for you.

My dad is one of seven kids. When my grandma was pregnant with baby #7, the family lived on an Air Force base in California. She woke up one night around 2am and went to use the bathroom, which is not unusual for very pregnant women. And she gave birth to my uncle. I guess after six kids, birthing baby #7 just isn't that big of a deal.

I'm pretty sure that kind of thing won't happen to me partly because I'm not having any contractions and that's important to labor and also because I'm a bit paranoid about the whole process. If labor does start I'd be one of those ladies who keeps going to the hospital and getting sent home. Pretty sure.

03 February 2015

The Final Countdown

T-minus 3 days until my due date and I'm pretty sure Baby Remy #2 is going to take after his big brother and not show up on time. In fact, at this point I get the feeling he's never going to come. On the one hand, that's great news because I have so much homework to do and, now that all the painting is done, we have to move back in to our house. On the other hand, I'm super exhausted and having a baby would be a great excuse not to show up to work and spend two days in the hospital doing nothing but cuddling our baby.
My cold is finally subsiding but my mom is still not free to travel and my sister who lives at home got whooping cough so I don't know if my mom would be allowed around the baby anyway. It's so ridiculous. 
The last two nights we stayed in a hotel just across the street from our house since the painters weren't finished until yesterday. We took William swimming for almost two hours and it felt great to be in the pool. When I was pregnant with William we went to the Provo Rec Center a few times right at the end of my pregnancy. I remember that getting out of the pool was the worst feeling in the world. This time, it wasn't bad at all. 
I did not sleep last night. It was awful and I'm so tired today. I'm not looking forward to going home to a disaster and a pile of homework. I had better not go in to labor today because I simply don't have the energy for that. A friend of mine told me that the body won't go in to labor if we're sick or overly tired. I'd like to believe that but then this baby will never get born. It doesn't help that there is no official plan with my doctor for if this baby doesn't come on his own. With William I knew that if I got to 41 weeks, I had a time set up at the hospital to go in and get things going. This time, nothing is set up yet. I have an appointment on Friday morning; we'll probably make a plan at that appointment.
Even though my due date is, technically, 3 days away, I still can't believe I'm going to have another baby. I haven't really bonded to this pregnancy like I did with William. I'm not sure why that is but it probably has to do with the fact that there is so much going on that I just don't have the time to process anything. With William I wasn't going to be in school so I only had to focus on healing and bonding with him in the six weeks I had off work. This time I've got three classes (plus two starting in March), another kid, and a house that looks like we just moved in. I'm feeling very much the same way I did at the beginning of this pregnancy: what were we thinking? In my exhaustion it's hard to remember the answers to prayer we received and it's hard to have faith that everything will work out. Whenever I start to freak out to my mom she reminds me that in 103 days from today (yes, that is exactly 100 days from my due date) I will be graduating with my master's degree and that is something I will have for the rest of my life. I can only "keep moving forward" as they say in Meet the Robinsons. 

30 January 2015

Baby Blankets!

Many months ago I went to JoAnn's and bought a bunch of fabric with the intention of sewing baby blankets for Baby Remy #2. Baby blankets are the one thing I know how to sew so I thought I'd try being domestic. I sewed two in November for a professor at my work who had her baby in December and sewed two at the same time for my baby but that left five to go.
Life happened and I never got around to it. My mother-in-law and sister-in-law saved the day by sewing the rest of the blankets plus a few more!
Here are the blankets from my mother- and sister-in-law:

Aren't those so cute?! I especially love the stitching on the monkey blanket. It looks like little bananas! And plaid? Does Tyson's fam know me or what?
And here are the blankets with the fabric I had picked out:

You might not think a baby needs this many blankets but I use them for just about everything: nursing cover, diaper changing area, burp cloth, spill cleaner, play mat, etc. They are washable, adorable, and I love them all. But especially the science one. I showed that fabric to Tyson and now he wants one in his size :)

39 Weeks: Pasmo?

Did you know it is totally possible for a pregnant woman's cervix to re-contract? Undilate? I don't know what the term is for that but I am back to where I was at 37 weeks. According to some lady on the internet (so it must be true) there is a term for stopped contractions, cervix re-dilation, or whatever, in Spanish: pasmo. Here's the article: http://inamay.com/going-backwards-the-concept-of-pasmo/
It was a pretty interesting read but I haven't found any recent, hard science to back it up. Considering what's going on in my life though, this isn't really that surprising.
Here I am, yesterday:

At my appointment this morning, my doc told me I'm back at 1 cm and I'm still just 50% effaced.
In the car today I was talking to Tyson about this and he speculated it's because I'm too stressed and that I need to relaxed. I laughed at him.
So, what's been going on in my life? I'm fighting the cold that never ends, I'm doing three master's classes, and our house is under construction and (since Wednesday) it's being painted so the house is smelly. 
Today has been the worst, though. I got William ready for preschool, the painters arrived at 8am sharp 'cause they're awesome like that, then I showered and got ready for my doctor's appointment. I exited my room at 9:10am and the painters were upstairs, wrapping my living room in plastic! Tyson and I had smooshed all the living room/kitchen stuff into the middle of those rooms on Wednesday. We had been told that the painters wouldn't get to the upstairs until Friday (today) afternoon at the earliest.
When I got home from my appointment at 10:30am, I met with our contractor to review paint colors for the upstairs rooms and then Tyson and I got to work. We had 1.5 hours until William got home from preschool to get William's room, our room, the laundry room, two bathrooms, and the office/dump room ready for painting. We emptied every closet, emptied and moved three bookshelves full of books and games, put all our hung-up clothing in one of our cars (for protection), and got all the artwork/surround sound system off the walls. We didn't finish before William got home but we did finish by 1:30pm. Before we finished the painters were already upstairs taping off doorways, the doorbell, and lightswitches. They even started doing some of the edging in our main hallway and entryway! 
Note: I'm taking lots of pictures which I will post on Facebook after the painting is all over. I will post a link here when that happens.
I was secretly/not-so-secretly hoping that all that moving would get my contractions going again, but nothing is happening.
We're out of the house for the weekend since the painters are also working on Saturday to get the whole upstairs done! I really hope they will finish everything because I'm only got 7 days until my due date and all my "nesting" and organizing prep-work just got thrown out the window. Yikes!
The good news about baby not being here yet is that I have more time to do schoolwork, more time to recover from my cold, the whole house will be painted, and my mom will be fully recovered from her bout of pneumonia so she'll be allowed to come see us in maybe a week or so. If I can keep baby in until his due date, my dad and youngest sister might even be able to come up for a long weekend to meet Baby Remy #2! 
The other good thing is that we are using this extra time to try and pick a name. As it stands, we have one favorite which would cause familial strife and four or five backup names. I'm not super attached to any of the backups and I'm trying my best not to be attached to our favorite.
We are out of the house for the weekend since there is no safe place there from the fumes. I'm looking forward to spending lots of time on my homework and trying my best to relax. Wish me luck!

23 January 2015

38 Weeks

Today I am 38 weeks pregnant. At my appointment this morning the doc measured me at 2cm dilated and still 50% effaced. So, not a lot of improvement despite the contractions I was having on Wednesday. The good news is that this gives me more time to jam on schoolwork and to recover from this ridiculous cold before baby gets here. My mom is also sick but she's got it way worse: pneumonia. Maybe baby will wait until my due date and then my mom will be cleared for travel! 
My cold continues to be awfully irritating. I was given permission to take Tylenol Cold meds so I'm definitely doing that on top of all the other things I've already been doing: nasal irrigation, steam, hot showers, cough drops, SARS mask, and tea with honey. I really hope there starts to be some improvement. Doc says I probably just have the viral cold (they really haven't seen much of the bacterial cold) but that if I can't beat it back I may pick up something worse. I DEFINITELY don't want that. 
Tyson couldn't sleep last night. He's been having some weird stomach pain but since he's allergic to aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAID) he's really limited in the medicine he can take. No Pepto Bismol. No Alka Seltzer. No Ibuprofen. It's sad. Anyways, he couldn't sleep so at 3am he was up and cleaning the house. He picked up all of William's toys from the front room, cleaned William's bathroom, organized our medicine cabinet, and ran some laundry. This afternoon we deep cleaned the living room, granted, we were looking for my cell phone, but at least the room is done! Our next project will be our room which really shouldn't be that bad.
Construction continues in the basement. The drywalling is done. I'm not sure what they were doing today but I'll be glad when the "construction" phase is over so the dust will go away. Installing cabinets and appliances and tiles shouldn't create that much dust. I'm having such a hard time breathing lately with my cold and I don't think the construction is helping anything. Tonight I'm going to set up the humidifier in my room and, if my brother isn't sleeping here tonight, I might borrow his air purifier and see if that will help me sleep. It feels like I'm breathing chemicals. It burns! Le sigh. Soon this baby will be here and I'll be able to take lots more meds to fight back this illness.

21 January 2015

37 Weeks

Friday was my 37 week mark which means baby can come whenever he wants. At my appointment on Friday I was 1.5cm dilated and 50% effaced. When my doc told me I was SHOCKED. At this point with William I was not dilated at all but 80% effaced. At 41 weeks with William I was the same. Seriously. I checked into the hospital and the nurse asked me if I was having any contractions. Nope. She told me I probably just didn't know I was having them and then hooked me up to the machine that can "see" your contractions. "Wow. You're not having ANY contractions." Thanks. I know.
Today I am 37 weeks and 5 days and I think I might be having some light contractions. Mostly it feels like period cramps or back cramps. To make sure, I'm drinking a ton of water. Doc says that dehydration can lead to pre-term labor. William and I are going to the Orem Heritage Museum today with the scouts. Maybe the extra walking will get things going for real. Construction is still going on at the house and our dog can't be downstairs when the guys are here because she just sits there and barks. This means I have to put her outside (where she'll bark at the neighbors) or in the laundry room since she can weasel her way under the railing on the stairs. Well the guys left the downstairs door OPEN, Maggie ran downstairs before I could catch her (Hello, I'm slow) and she ran outside. Sans collar. I got William dressed (we prefer him in less clothes because of potty training) and in his "backpack" (harness) and we headed out. Luckily Maggie was just across the street.
I still have not packed a hospital bag or William's overnight bag. Laundry is almost done though so I WILL do that today. I'm really trying to jam on this week's homework. I've only got a few things left to do and I'd rather not be trying to do homework in the hospital. The bag seems less important than my homework. Tyson could always come back and get me things but he can't do my homework for me.
In non-pregnancy news, Tyson got a raise at work! I'm so proud of him. And it's perfect timing since I'll be off work for a while. William is going to start going to preschool three days a week instead of just two. The adaptive P.E. teacher only comes on Tuesdays and Thursdays but William goes Wednesdays and Fridays. Since he broke his leg, he hasn't been quite as coordinated. In fact, sometimes he'll walk like a cowboy. Or sometimes he won't bend his ankle when he walks. His teacher wanted to add a third day of preschool so he could have adaptive P.E. Sounds great to us! William's speech is doing so much better since he started school. He loves going to "class" on the bus and it's so cute to have him tell me all the things he's done every time he goes.
I'm not sure if this is a speech thing or just a normal development thing, but William's memory and recall is really amazing. He tells me all the time about he went with his grandma to the zoo and Legoland and saw whales. Those things all happened the week after Christmas and he's STILL talking about them! I love it. Also, William went to Sunbeams (Sunday school for 3-year-olds) for the first time in our ward this week. He was sad not to go to Nursery (18months to 3 years) but I checked on him during second hour while he was in class and he was participating and doing so well! My neighbor told me that he was super cute during Primary. I didn't get a chance to ask her what he did but I'm glad he wasn't a sad or crazy kid.
So, there you have it. Tyson got a raise. William is still fantastic. And Baby Remy #2 could be making an appearance sooner than we thought. Happy Wednesday!