Saturday, December 26, 2015

Christmas 2015

Our Christmas this year was quite a bit different than years past. Rob and I decided a few months ago that we would not be going to either of our parents' houses. We knew I'd either be ridiculously pregnant, or that we'd have teeny tiny newborns. As it turns out I'm still pregnant, yay, so we had our family come to us.

I wasn't sure we were going to be able to do Christmas Eve mass, but since I'm still feeling pretty good, we were able to make it to mass. I wasn't exactly able to stand or kneel as I should, sorry to the people behind us, but we made it through. And best of all, Rob was off work early enough to join us. 

By 7pm Harrison was asking to go to bed, so it was an early night for them. Brooke was right to sleep, but Harry was still up at 9:30 because he was "too excited for Santa." I managed to get to bed by 10:30, but then tossed and turned more than usual. I was just too excited for the morning with the kiddos.

My parents came over first thing in the morning, and then Rob's parents joined us later. The day was full of lots of excitement, outfit changes, and time spent in the new bounce house.  We are truly blessed and had a wonderful day.

By about 4pm, family was gone and we had already made the decision to skip naps. We knew the kids would be in bed at least an hour early, so we decided to spend the last hour of daylight playing in the hot tub. It was the kids and my first time in. Harry was asking to get in today, so I think they enjoyed it. 

Christmas is a truly magical day, and I love seeing the magic through my kids' eyes. I know the excitement of it all will last into the weeks ahead.  I hope all of you had a blessed holiday spent with loved ones, and I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

37 Weeks

How Far Along - 37 Weeks!! Full Term!
Babies' Size -  Both babies were measuring 6lbs7oz at our ultrasound on Friday. 
Total Weight Gain - This week has been another up and down week in the weight department thanks to swelling. This morning I was up 52, and I think that's pretty accurate. 
Gender - Boy and Girl!
Names - I think we know what their names will be, but I'm not feeling a big connection between the babies and their names. It will definitely be a post birth decision.  
Maternity Clothes - I'm glad I only have a week left, because even my maternity clothes are barely covering this belly.  
Cravings - Soup! It hasn't even been that cold here, but I'm all about soup. Chick Fil A's chicken tortilla is one of my faves right now. I also had a sushi craving this week, which was satisfied immediately. It will be nice when I have more than just a couple safe sushi options to choose from.  
Symptoms - Lots of swelling, pressure, round ligament pain, Braxton Hicks, and heartburn. The heartburn has been a real bitch this week. It doesn't matter what I eat, when I eat, or how much I eat, the heartburn is there. Pass the Tums and Zantac please!
Sleep - Still lots of tossing and turning, but I'm thankfully getting a decent amount of rest. I had one night that required a couple hours of upright sleeping, which I'm not a fan of. Although, I'm also not a fan of side sleeping. I can't wait to get back to sleeping on my stomach and back. 
Miss Anything - Energy. I am thankfully still feeling really good in the morning, but by lunchtime I'm pretty well spent. Thank goodness for kids that still nap. 
Stretch Marks - No new ones, but I definitely have them. 
Looking Forward To - Christmas! All of our shopping is done, presents are wrapped, and now we wait. I am so excited to have this last big holiday with Harrison and Brooke before the babies arrive. As excited as I am to meet the babies, I'm enjoying every last minute I can with my first babies. 
Best Moment This Week - Getting to enjoy a movie date with Rob today. Movie dates when I'm about to pop seem to be our thing. With H and B we went to see The Avengers a week and a half before they were born. Today it was Star Wars. I miraculously made it through the whole movie without needing a bathroom break. Impressive, I know. ;) Also, making it to 37 weeks is HUGE! 

Appointment Notes - All looked good on our ultrasound. There was a little confusion over fluid levels that had us freaked out until my OB talked to the u/s tech to clarify. We have another ultrasound tomorrow to make sure all looks good to hold out to the 28th. Mostly they'll just be checking fluid levels and positioning. I won't be seeing my OB tomorrow, and when I left my Friday appointment, she said I'll see you on the 28th. It's great to know she feels as confident as I do that we'll make it to our scheduled section. 

Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Death of a Birth Plan

Long before I ever got pregnant, or even knew we would have trouble getting pregnant, I knew I was going to have an unmedicated home birth. When we first started trying, or not trying to avoid as it were, I watched The Business of Being Born. I then followed that up with lots of books and journals regarding birth. I became a major home birth advocate and knew our future baby would be born at home, or in the very least a birthing center.

Fast forward 5 years, and we were finally pregnant. I held onto the dream of a relaxing home birth during all of our fertility struggles. I was convinced I was still going to be able to have the birth I dreamed of, and then we found out it was twins. So much for the home birth I dreamed of. Yes there are women who home birth multiples, but it increased the risk enough I wasn't comfortable with it anymore.  

Thankfully my OB was on board with an unmedicated natural hospital birth. So that was the plan for 30 weeks. Then we found out I needed to be induced due to preeclampsia. My doctor was great about keeping things as natural as possible while still getting things moving. Pitocin was considered a last resort. 

I cried after that appointment as I drove home to get the house in order before our induction that night. I knew the statistics on induction and natural birth, and I knew the odds were no longer in my favor. Less than 24 hours after my doctors appointment, Harrison and Brooke were born via c-section. While their birth wasn't at all what I planned or hoped for, it was what was necessary, and we all came out healthy on the other end. 

We knew we wanted more kids, and I knew I wanted a VBAC, so we waited almost 2 years before our FET. The longer after your c section, the higher chance of a successful natural delivery. I knew an HBAC was out of the question after my delivery with H and B, so I again planned for a natural hospital delivery. 

At 7 weeks we found out it was twins again, and I was told immediately I was crazy for considering a twin VBAC. I was still laying on the ultrasound table being told I shouldn't even consider a twin VBAC. If I wasn't already crying, I was as soon as I heard that. 

My OB was more optimistic, but still was in favor of a repeat c-section. She was willing to try a natural birth if everything was going smoothly, which it thankfully is. Almost 37 weeks, no health issues this go round, two head down babies. The things natural twin births are made of.  

I started doing a little research, and it didn't take long for me to make a decision. I discussed it with Robbie, and he was very much for a scheduled c-section. By that time, I was too. It took me a while to come to terms with it, but by 20 weeks we knew we would be having a scheduled repeat c-section. We discussed dates, which is totally weird to me to plan the day your babies will arrive, and decided that after Christmas was best. 

For almost 5 weeks now we have know that December 28th is our babies' eviction day, and I've prayed every day that we make it that far. We have to arrive at the hospital at 5am for a 7:30 c-section. I still haven't packed my bag, because I'm convinced we will make it to our scheduled date.  

Life has a way of throwing curves your way. While I never dreamed I'd be a c-section mama, I am and I'm ok with it.  I never dreamed I'd be the mom of two sets of twins, but here I am, about to welcome my second set in a week and a half. All of this to say it's ok that things didn't go how I planned. As important as my ideal birth was, it's not what matters anymore. My healthy children are. I was still able to exclusively breast feed, and make other natural choices for their life. Things that were as important to me as the birth I had planned. While their birth is about them, I realized that the plan I had was more about me, and that as long as they're healthy and safe, it's all that matters. Do I still wish I could have had the home birth that some of my friends were able to experience? Of course I do, but I am just as happy with the days spent in the hospital with H and B, and the days to come that I'll spend in the hospital with our still nameless new babies. 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Birthdays and Breakfast With Santa

I knew going into this weekend it was going to be a busy one. In true Jenn style I decided a weekend full of kid activities wasn't enough, and I decided to throw holiday baking into the mix too. I kind of regret that decision, but I did manage to get all of our treat making done in time to include goodies in the kids' teacher gifts, so it all worked out well. After my doctor's appointment Friday, the kids and I picked up all of the necessary ingredients for baking. We got to work after naps, and they were eager to help. They were great at crushing Oreos, dipping buckeyes, and watching Christmas movies when I needed them out of the way.

Saturday morning we went to Breakfast with Santa at the YMCA. We didn't get to sit down with the big buy, but there were plenty of other things to do. Like bounce houses. H and B remembered that there were bounces houses at last year's Breakfast with Santa, so they were asking about bouncing around before we even left the house. They also got to meet Elsa, play games, pet a reindeer, make a human snowman, and get their faces painted. I find most Elsas to be rather creepy, it's something about the hair, but this one wasn't too bad. Brooke ran right up to her and was super excited to meet her. My parents joined us for this, and it was nice to have an extra set of hands, or two as was the case, so they could watch the kids bounce while I patiently waited in line for 45 minutes so H and B could get their faces painted.

Next up was their bestie's birthday. Games, balloons, cookies. The usual things 5 year olds birthday parties consist of. Brooke won one of the games and when it came time to pick out her prize she chose a mini dart board over a princess crown and tiara. Way to throw me a curve ball, Princess Brooke. The church Sophie's dad attend was having a festival so we went to that after the party. It was essentially a gym full of bounce houses, which was great for the kids, but I was dying from the heat of 10,000 people packed into 5,000 square feet. I convinced the kids we should go to the park, thank goodness for 60 degrees in December, so we did that for a little bit before heading home.

The weather was so nice that all of the neighborhood kids were out playing in the culdesac when we got home. I got a chance to meet a few neighbors, the kids got to make a bunch of new friends, and we ended the night with all of the kids raiding our bubble and sidewalk chalk stash. No naps meant an early bedtime for them, and extra bake time for me.

Sunday morning it was more baking, and then we were off to our cousin Blake's 2nd birthday party. We were having a good time at Blake's party until a party favor mix up caused one of the most epic meltdowns I have ever seen. Harrison lost his shit. Like, I've never seen him so upset. We immediately took the kids home for naps and hoped for a better attitude after some rest.

Thankfully they were straight to sleep, and we were able to have a great evening full of Christmas light viewing. We stopped by Rob's parents to see their nutcracker collection and trees. Then it was off to dinner at one of our favorite Chinese restaurants. Next up was the big Santa and other lights downtown. Finally we drove through the Fantasy of Lights before calling it a night. We planned to do all of the light viewing after our Santa visit on Wednesday, but the stomach bug postponed it until Sunday, which I actually think worked out better.

Monday, December 14, 2015

36 Weeks

How Far Along - 36 Weeks 1 Day
Babies' Size - I'm guessing their size is right around 6 pounds. This week we will have a full ultrasound with measurements and a biophysical profile. I'm excited to see how they're measuring. 
Total Weight Gain - I was still at 49 pounds on Saturday. Sunday I was up 2, and today I was up another 2. Water weight? So somewhere between 49 and 53. Il be watching to see if it levels off or stays at 53.  
Gender - Boy and Girl!
Maternity Clothes - Still rotating the last few items in my closet that actually fit. Sweats, yoga pants, maternity jeans, and maternity shirts.
Cravings - None. I've been eating to eat, and not really because anything sounds great. We did have Chinese food from one of our favorite restaurants last night, and it did hit the spot. I 
Symptoms - Swelling is new just within the last 24-48 hours. The bones in my feet and my ankles are almost nonexistent. I'm really hoping that it's just the result of a busy weekend and that it will minimize a little bit.
Sleep - The cold that plagued me last week is gone, so sleep has been a little bit better. Tyson has been driving me freaking crazy at night. He is having a hard time adjusting to sleep in the new house, and I know me changing positions every hour or two doesn't help. Overall I can't complain though. I did have one night where I moved down to the couch because my hips were so sore, but otherwise I've been making it from 11-7 most nights without too many issues.
Miss Anything - Being able to keep a clean house. I know that's kind of a trivial thing, but not feeling up to house work is kind of driving me batty. The energy I do have is devoted to the kids, getting things ready for babies, and all things holiday. Cleaning has taken a back seat and I'm looking forward to having energy to clean again. Until then, I'll keep the house habitable, and the mop can take a back seat.
Stretch Marks - Yep! They're still less noticeable if my belly is fully moisturized, but there's no denying they're there.
Purchases - A few things for me. A robe and new slippers to pack in my hospital bag, which I still haven't packed. I know I need to, but I feel like as soon as I do it's a sign to the universe that I'm ready for the babies to show up.
Looking Forward To - This is Brooke and Harrison's last week of school and classes. I am excited to have a few mornings where we don't have to rush out the door, and we can meander around the house all morning. I'm sure we'll still get out and do things next week, even if it's just a quick Starbucks run, but it will be nice to have a week where our schedule isn't so busy.
Best Moment This Week - Making it through another week! At this point every day is a blessing. This pregnancy has been so different than with H and B. I'm convinced staying active is the difference. By this time last pregnancy, I was miserable, swollen, uncomfortable, and just plain over it. I was hoping every day would be the day I went into labor, and this go round, I'm hoping I don't. 

Appointment Notes - BP was 122/78. Still nice and low, and I'm beyond happy about that. We had another NST this week, and little man actually cooperated. Both babies had quite a few rises and falls in their heart rate which is what they like to see. Normal fluctuation and some movement. Our next two, last two, appointments are both ultrasound appointments, so this NST was our last. 

Monday, December 7, 2015

35 Weeks

How Far Along - 35 Weeks 1 Day
Babies' Size - A couple of honeydew melons or coconuts. Both babies were weighing over 5lbs at my ultrasound a week ago. Assuming we make it to 38 weeks, I think we're going to be looking at 7 pound babies.
Total Weight Gain - 49 pounds total. I usually weigh myself every day or two, but I went for a couple weeks without the scale during our move. I'd be very curious to see if the gain has been consistent or if there was a big jump over Thanksgiving weekend.
Gender - Boy and Girl!
Maternity Clothes - I'm down to 4 tees and 3 tanks that cover my belly. And when I say they cover it, that's only if I continuously pull them down. Maternity jeans and yoga pants when I leave the house, sweatpants at home all the time. We now have neighbors that can see in our windows, so the no pants option I loved so much a few weeks ago is no longer an option.
Cravings - Peppermint everything. Coffee, pretzels, oreos, ice cream, everything. To be fair, I'd probably be craving all things peppermint even if I wasn't pregnant. I love peppermint!! Christmastime of heaven to my taste buds.
Symptoms - Lots of Braxton Hicks. I definitely notice them at least every hour, and they're often frequent enough that I have to lay down and chug some water. Lots and lots of baby movement. I can tell they are getting crowded in there. The movements they make and they things they are doing to my stomach right now are almost creepy. Very minimal sweeling by the end of the day. Nothing at all close to what I experienced last time. 

Sleep - I've had a cold over the last week which has made sleep worse than usual. I am tossing and turning a lot, but I'm no longer waking up at 6am and being unable to fall back asleep. Most days I do take advantage of nap time and I can make up for an hour of sleep then.
Miss Anything - Not worrying. I'm worried about the babies coming early, how Harrison and Brooke are going to handle things, getting the babies' room ready, making sure we're ready for Christmas. You get the idea. We have so much going on right now that it has my usual laid back self feeling on edge. Definitely not a feeling I'm used to.
Stretch Marks - Yep! I think a few of them may be new, but most of them are ones from postpartum with H and B.

Purchases - Everything!! Now that we're in the new house, I've been on a baby shopping spree. Car seats, rock and plays, double snap and go, winter baby clothes, nursing supplies and pillow, baby monitor. I think I have everything ordered that needs ordered, now I'm just waiting for a few more things to show up. Between Christmas, baby purchases, and items for the new house, our USPS and UPS drivers have been making daily deliveries. We haven't purchased a table for our formal dinning room yet, so right now that room is serving as a staging area for all of the new baby gear that has been arriving.
Looking Forward To - Finishing getting everything organized. Baby clothes have been sorted and laundered, the nursery is painted, cribs are set up. We are definitely getting there, and I can't wait until I feel like we really have everything ready to go. I should probably get bags packed for the kids and I and make arrangements for the dogs.
Best Moment This Week - Rob's work Christmas party was last weekend. We went to the party and then went out for a night cap after. Martinis for him, decaf coffee and dessert for me. We're so close to having our life turned upside down again, it was really nice to get out and enjoy an evening with just the two of us. 

Appointment Notes - We've had a couple ultrasounds over the past few weeks. Both babies scored 8 out of 8 on their biophysical profiles. Baby girl was weighing in a 5lbs4oz a week ago, and baby boy was at 5lbs6oz. My blood pressure was 110/70 at my appointment on Friday. I'm so relieved that my BP has been staying down. 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

We Moved

We have had a crazy last two weeks, but the good news is we're moved, and I'm still pregnant! Moving at 33 weeks pregnant was no joke, but we made it and are slowly getting settled into our new home.

We loved our old house, but it was never our house.  In 4 years there the only room I painted or art I hung on the wall was in Harriosn and Brooke's room.  It was a great rental and was the perfect transition for us from partying kids in our 20s to responsible, mostly, parents in our 30s. We loved the time we spent there, and will definitely miss the neighborhood and having the church and school as our primary neighboors.

I had been slowly packing a couple boxes each day, so when it came to crunch time, we mostly just had the kids room and kitchen left to pack. We closed on our new home on Monday the 23rd, moved on Tuesday, had cleaners come in and were fully out of our old house on Wednesday, and were ready for Thanksgiving on Thursday, Thankfully we weren't hosting. We did host Friendsgiving on Sunday, and our friends were all kind enough to ignore the boxes everywhere.

H and B's empty room

It was a whirlwind week and we're glad it's over. All of our moves have been in town, so we've always just rented a Uhaul, bought a case of beer and some pizza, and had family and friends help. Due to my current condition, and Rob's crazy work schedule, we decided to hire movers, and it was the best decision ever. They showed up at 8am, and were done by 3pm. It only cost around $700 and was so worth every penny. If you live in The Fort, I highly recommend Fairfield Movers.

Celebrating our move

We also hired a cleaning crew to do a move out clean, which was again worth every penny. Not having to worry about cleaning the fridge or scrubbing the floors after we were moved out was such a relief. If I weren't so pregnant we probably wouldn't have spent the money on that, but it was definitely worth it given our current situation. 

So now we're working on getting settled into our new house. The kids are loving it. Their room is bigger, they have a great walk in closet/library, and they have a basement playroom now. If we could just find Harrison's dang Lightning McQueen car, they'd be all set.

Nursery painting. Bye bye pumpkin baby poop brown.

Most of our boxes have been unpacked, the Christmas tree is up, and the nursery has been painted. We still have a lot to get done over the next 3 weeks, but I think we'll maybe be ready when it's time for these babies to show up.