28 February, 2014

When Friday Funday Ends in Tears

There's been seemingly a lot of talk this week about how everyone's lives are picture perfect on Twitter and Blogs...so here's a glimpse into my not-so-picture-perfect day.

Yesterday Evie was complaining of a stomachache, which is a whole different story.  Basically she had two huge diaper blow outs and threw up.  She was restless all night with a cough (again).  As I laid awake from 2am-4am listening to her suffer through another coughing fit I was really glad I didn't make Friday Funday plans with friends. Because, WHO KNOWS what the morning would bring.

Well, toddlers are remarkable creatures.  Evie slept until 9:15 am. Whatthewhat?!?!  And woke up a bundle of energy.

She was excited for pancakes and promptly asked what our adventure would be for the day.  Well, crap.

While she was eating breakfast I got an email from the Gap Outlet that they were having a 30-70% off everything in the store sale. We had a few more items on our spring shopping list.  And who can pass up a chance to browse the Pottery Barn outlet?  Besides, I had a short list of things I "needed" to get there as well.

So, what the heck.  Let's make a day of it.

By the time we were ready to head out it was lunch time. Evie was begging for a cheeseburger (um, okay).  I wasn't about to whip up cheeseburgers so I thought we'd grab drive through and eat them on the way to the outlet mall.

They had just learned about transportation in preschool, and Evie's been obsessed with roller skates ever since.  There's a Sonic on our way.  We stopped for burgers, tots and mmmm cherry coke. And of course got to see the car hops on skates.

I finished my burger and Evie was still eating tots and her apple juice, but we needed to hit the road.  I didn't even think to check her burger.

As we got on the highway she asked for her burger so I passed it back.  A few minutes later she started crying, "Mommy, it's yucky. No like it mommy. Yuck!"  So I took it from her. Woof! It was covered COVERED in mustard.

Now I can't stand the smell of yellow mustard not pregnant, but pregnant it makes me super queasy.  I was trying to drive and now my hands were covered in yellow mustard. I tried to clean up, but it was a losing battle.

Fast forward.

It's now 1 pm (nap time is at 2pm) and I have a hungry toddler and no stroller. (Serves me right for thinking she's old enough to stay with me in the store).

I told Evie her job while at Gap was to pick out new jammies for her and baby sister while I shopped for other bargains.  I swear she was right there behind me, and then all of the sudden she wasn't.

I peeked around a few racks expected she couldn't have gone to far in a matter of seconds.  But she was gone.  GONE.

I figured she was maybe over in the boy's section around the corner. No.
Checked the big girl's section. No.
Peeked in the women's. No.
Circled around to men's. No.
At this point I am shouting her name over the music and RUNNING.

This store is huge and full of little cubbies and corners.  It also has a few exits.

My heart was racing. I mean, we live in a city known for kidnappings and sex trafficking.  My mind assumed the worse.

I was now sweaty and sprinting.  Shouting for her.

No one else in the store, employees included, seemed to notice a pregnant lady running through the store shouting her daughter's name.

I finally heard her giggle. She was up at the cash register, the furthest point in the store from where I was shopping. She jumped out and said, "Peek a boo!"  But quickly changed her tone (thank God) when she saw me crying.

"Why mommy sad?"

I tried to explain to her that she was not being a good listener and that I wasn't happy with her. She didn't seem to care.

She more or less played peek-a-boo with me while I tried to finish shopping.

When I went to check out I put Evie up on the counter with my huge pile of bargains and the girl said, "Looks like you have your hands full today" which every mom knows is code for "Wow lady you can't control your kid"

I burst into tears as we walked out of the store.

Fast forward.

We get the stuff in the car and walk back toward Pottery Barn but Evie sees the playground. We now have a stand off on the side walk for a solid 10 minutes.  I finally had to pick her up and carry her into and around Pottery Barn.

Huffing and puffing.

Because 32 weeks pregnant carrying a 34 pound 2 year old who is crying...

Fast forward.

She was more or less fine in the store and was eager to play on the playground when we were done.  She did great for about 5 minutes until she got stuck up at the highest point. She is terrified of climbing down and even more so of slides.  (There is no way she could have learned this from me, but I am the same way!).  She kept asking me to come up and get her, but at that moment a nerve pinched in my butt, sending shooting pain down my leg.  I nearly collapsed on the playground.

I had to limp to a bench.  And now Evie was having a panic attack at the top of the playground and I couldn't move.

Of course everyone is just walking by looking at me like "you crazy ass lady. get your kid"

Choking back tears I crawled up the stairs and dragged Evie back down.  I was in so much pain and she was such a wreck I just carried her straight to the car.

Of course she was disappointed.

She had a meltdown.  Like full on velociraptor screaming.

For THIRTY TWO MINUTES on the way home.

Until we hit traffic.  Facing the sun. Five minutes from home.  When she fell asleep in the car.

Well, damn.

So much for a Fun-Day.

27 February, 2014

A Baby Sprinkle - Party Favors & Umbrella Cookies

Here we are on day 4 of 7... I already feeling like I'm digging for content, but then I remembered these photos I took last month and never put a post with them!

My girlfriend Alyshia was expecting baby #3 in early February.   Little baby Joshua was a little bit of a surprise, and Alyshia and Greg had already given away most of their baby gear.  Her friend Rebecca and I decided to host a "Sprinkle" to get Alyshia and Greg a few new essentials for bringing home baby Joshua.

Rebecca and I hosted the event at a local Mexican restaurant (Their tag line is "Mexican with an attitude," perfect for Alyshia, amiright?).  We had a huge table and shared queso and guacamole as a group.  Everyone ordered their own drinks and dinner.  

Rebecca organized a little activity where we all wrote notes of encouragement to Alyshia to read in labor.

After dinner Alyshia opened gifts.  

The "sprinkle" was super easy and fun. The perfect girl's night out meets baby shower.

Don't you like all the pictures of the party I remembered to take?


So my responsibilities for the baby shower were the favors and the dessert.  Hooray!  I love tiny crafts!  Alyshia had specially requested I make decorated cookies for her, so that was a no brainer.

For the party favors I had envisioned something in mini mason jars, but dang, those are more expensive than I would have guessed. So off to Target I went.  I had tons of blue Sixlets leftover from another shower, so I needed something to work with that...

YAY Target Dollar Spot.  I found these little square and circle containers.

 And these sticky pom-poms.

The clearance section of the stationary aisle had these bundles of bakers twine 2 for $1 (what?!!, yes I bought extra!)
And VOILA!  Little candy treat boxes.  They were perfect and delicious.

I used this same color scheme to decorate the cookies.  I thought I'd had a baby onesie cookie cutter, but I think I only have it on Pinterest and not in real life. Thank goodness I had remembered the umbrella cookie cutter I happened to have in a months-of-the-year cookie cutter set.  

 I used the sugar cookie and royal icing recipes from The Decorated Cookie. It is Oh-My-Gosh delicious.
I piped the outside with a #2 tip and flooded with a #4 tip.

 I used a #5 to pipe the arm and handle of the umbrella.  I also used some shimmer dust mixed into a few drops of golden grain to make the silver shiny.  (Note: Any high-proof colorless alcohol will do to affix shimmer or sanding sugars)
 The umbrellas were perfect for a "shower" or even a "sprinkle"  -  And the handles made the perfect "J" for Joshua :)

I added some course sanding sugar to look like rain.

I put each cookie in a cellophane bag and tied it with a silver twist tie.  And that was it!

I really wish I had a picture of Rebecca's Diaper Cake Centerpiece, but it was incredible! And she used a bottle of wine called Josh as the center part of the diaper cake. What a great surprise :)

We had so much fun hosting this party for Alyshia.  My only wish I that I had remembered to take pictures AT the party!

26 February, 2014

So Easy Being Green: Home Entertainment Edition

One of the goals of the 7x7 challenge was to dig out drafts or half-baked blogging ideas...so for my third of seven posts, here's one I never got around to publishing!

So, y'all, I had so much fun discussing cloth napkins and gardening with you after this post so I decided to do follow ups occasionally.

It's often that "being green" and "being cheap" go hand in hand. Eric and I discovered most of these when we were gazelle intense in dumping debt.  Turns out they're also environmentally friend, and great for recovering pack rats like myself.

Digital Media
Level: Beginner
Cost: Some start up fee, $-$$

The iTunes era really pioneered this. Ditch the CDs buy an iPod and digital music. I was hooked. Same with a Kindle. Same with our Roku.  Instead of hoarding books, movies, magazines, etc.  Small start up fees for these gadgets grant you an unlimited world of digital media for less than the hard copy.  No more transportation waste in obtaining, production waste in making it, and less for you to store (and clean) around your home.

This could really be it's own post with all the fun details we've learned, but I did want to mention that an Amazon Prime account goes a long way: free two day shipping on all purchases, plus free instant streaming videos and tv shows (think Hulu but sans commercials), and a monthly loaning library for Kindle books. It's $80 a year well spent.

The Library!
Level: Beginner
Cost: Totally free

Sure you'll probably be on a list for the latest best seller, but otherwise free access to thousands of books! And did you know they have movies and TV series you can borrow too? And some have rentable ebooks!   Some libraries even offer yoga classes, puppet shows, or other family fun activities for cheap or free.  We taught ourselves how to garden and decorate cakes with the books we found at the library! With a short trip to the library you're cutting down on production waste by reusing and sharing resources.

Level: Beginner
Cost: Money Saving!

Seems a contrary to what I just said, but sometimes you just need to unplug.  Play some board games or go for a walk.  Not using electronics saves on your electric bill and saves electricity.  But did you know that even leaving them plugged in uses a tiny bit of electricity?  So if you're gone for a weekend, unplug your TV, computer, etc and save a few extra bucks and electricity!

25 February, 2014

Big Girl Room Progress Report

Today is day 2 of 7 posts in Conversion Diary's Challenge.

I've given mini-updates in my bimonthly Bump Watch Updates, but I haven't really tracked the progress of the Great Big Girl Room Make Over process as promised. 

I posted the inspiration for her room back in September.

The status of her room was manageable.  We had an easy time line of September - November to get the room done in time for her Second Birthday.

But during that time my parents cleaned out two of the storage areas in their house and brought more of my stuff (that I didn't even know I had!) along with all the bulky baby gear we had in their attic while we moved.  

The task to get the room made over became OMG more daunting.

Work season piled on stress and business and the room sat untouched for almost three months.  Really, until about 2 weeks before Christmas, a month after our initial deadline.

But it was do-able. We booked a weekend to organize all the junk. And get started on painting the walls.

We chose two shades of grey by Sherwin Williams. (I'll list all the details in another post)  My mother did most of the painting since the odor was really strong, and apparently pregnant women aren't supposed to be around paint fumes.

A few days later, once the walls were good a dry, Eric took all the furniture apart.  My mom and I estimated a quick coat of primer in the morning and a thick coat of trim paint in the afternoon and the furniture would be done.

However, as we finished the first coat of primer we realized we needed a second coat.  After reading the directions it said to wait 2+ hours between coats, but that wasn't enough.  So we put the project on hold for another few days....

At this point it was two days before Christmas and I knew the project wasn't going to be finished before our modified deadline of Christmas morning.  My heart was broken, but such is life.

Everything sat for a good week before I could get to what would end up being two coats of paint.  All the holidays, a destination wedding and flu included, I was able to get the furniture painted, cured and assembled by January 6.  Not too bad!

Evie was getting increasingly curious about her new room.  She really wanted to sleep in there, but I wanted to see how potty training went before we also moved her room.  I also wanted to have the whole room perfectly completed before we moved her in there.

But potty training was a bust.

Some time in mid January Target had a big sale on their pillows (we needed 5 for her bed) and on the rugs for kid's rooms.  SCORE!  I found a rug that works perfectly in her room.  So late one night Evie and I went to Target for these things and she was JUST SO EXCITED about her big girl room that she asked to sleep in her bed.

And I let her.
The first two weeks were really rough.  She wanted to go back to her Tiny Bed (as she called the toddler bed) most nights some where around 2 or 3 am. The first week of February we devised a new plan.  The only way Evie couldn't go back to her tiny bed was if her tiny bed was actually a crib again.
Eric had the brilliant idea of making Evie "help" with the bed transformation. He talked to Evie about how the crib is now ready for Sister to sleep in.  And that she can't sleep in a baby bed, but rather had to stay in her big girl bed!

I wish I could say it was smooth sailing after that, but it was certainly a good step.   We introduced Evie to the pillows and I got all the linens ironed and put together. Her bed looks great!

After two months of lamp shopping (my goodness, why does that suck so much?), I finally settled on the over priced ones at Pottery Barn Kids.  Fortunately I randomly had a gift card that took the edge off.  And honestly, I really love the lamp and I'm glad we splurged.

So here's what we have finished ---  It's ADORABLE!
I love that it's sweet enough for a 2 year old, but also something she can grow into over the next several years.

So what's left:

  • I need to secure this dust ruffle. Waiting for it to be on sale or at the Pottery Barn Outlet. Or to find something similar elsewhere.

  • The coordinating bean bag chair for her room is on back order, but should arrive soon.
  • Finally found a bookshelf at IKEA for the reading area. Need to make the trip to pick it up.
  • I have one final coat left on some wall shelves I need to finish
  • Mostly waiting on my parents to return from their month in Florida so my mom can help me decorate the walls. 
  • We're going to make some canvas art work with Evie's name on it to personalize the wall over her bed
  • I need to find a tie-back solution for the curtains. There's only 1.5 inches between the window frame and the wall. 
  • I'd like to replace the bamboo curtains (they look like sushi rolling boards) with white wood or faux wood blinds, but this is a low priority item.
  • I'd also like to find a second set of sheets for her bed while lavender and grey are such a popular colors. Again, a trip to the PB outlet is in order.

I cannot wait for this project to be completely done. I hate that I still have a paint tarp out, and that the walls are empty, but we'll get there!!

The goal of Evie being comfortable in her new room well before Sister arrives was met. That's all I can ask for!

24 February, 2014

Evie's Preschool Experience - A midyear check in

I "signed up" or "committed" to join Conversion Diary in doing seven blog posts in seven days. One of the premises was to write about stuff you've been meaning to catch up on.  And the point of the exercise is just to write, and not be perfectionist about blogging (not that I really am anyway, ha!).

Today I want to share a little about Evie's preschool experience.
(first day of school! My family!)

As a short back story, Evie went to in-home childcare with another family for last school year while I worked. It was fabulous. And that had been the plan for this year as well.  The nanny we used last year moved on to another job so we'd searched and hired someone for the summer, who was great but she was a college student.  And the nanny we'd hired for the Fall ended up getting recruited for job in her field a few months earlier than expected. This left us without childcare while I worked 15-19 hours a week in the Fall.

We prayed and Googled and as God would have it, I happened to drive by the little Lutheran Church half a mile from where I work the day they put up a sign the first week of August "Openings in 18mo-3 years old".  You better believe I called and toured the next day. It was perfect!

I'd known a few casual friends who had sent kids there so that helped ease the transition, even though I was super nervous about over-schooling my child.

The need for affordable childcare won so we bought a backpack and a lunch box and off she went.

Those first few weeks, and even months were tricky. Three four-hour days during her nap time was really hard on her.  She spent a lot of afternoons taking car naps, or worse, fighting me for an hour due to over exhaustion before she'd lay down for a nap.

 But those days are gone.

We're in a great routine on school days. Evie makes it home all but one or two days a month before the nap sets in.

Initially, I was really hesitant about sending Evie to preschool at just 22 months old.  I am so anti-over schooling and over committing kids to activities.  I am a firm believe in play and social time, especially for two year olds.  There are many, many pre-schools in our area that I won't send my children to because they're forcing unnecessary things on them to "prep" them for Kindergarden.  I'm not even sorry that I don't think my 3 or 4 year old needs a computer class at school.  Anyway....

We were so blessed that the school we found for her had really fit what we would want should we need to send our kids to school "early".

Evie has learned so many new skills while at school this year and had grown socially.  The school has pushed her beyond what I would have encouraged her to do or tried at home, out of fear that she was too little or not ready.

Some of the things Evie has brought home from school have amazed us.  She's learned to count to twenty, knows her colors, shapes and ABCs.  She has learned over a dozen songs with hand motions or full body movement.  She learned how to turn on the bathroom sink, use soap, wash her hands and get a paper towel.  She can use stickers, crayons and markers; and scissors and glue with help.  She has a great clean up routine and has learned to group like-toys to put them away.

She's gone from being super timid to trying new things.  And from shy to excited when going to play with friends.

We've discovered just how social she is -- she talks about her friends and teachers all day.  We learned that she loves to play in the sandbox and swing, but even with the "peer pressure" of her friends and encouragement of her teachers, she's still afraid of slides more than 2 feet tall.

Most of all I love that she's learning to take direction from adults other than us.  She also has incredible table manners, because they have a snack and lunch at school.  Evie is so joyful and social. All the teachers know her and comment on how well behaved and fun she is to be around.

Her experiences have confirmed that though a last minute decision it was the right one.  We're so glad we found a school that is so play based, affirming and kind.  I know we could have done a lot of these things at home, but I don't think we would have had the same impact, nor would she get the social engagement. There is just something important about learning to share and to interact at such an early age.

I certainly miss my girl when she's at school, but I also love the opportunity to work and schedule doctor/dentist/haircuts and not have to worry about a sitter.  It also gives us a great break from each other, and I find that invaluable.

Eric and I  talked a lot about what we're going to do next year since we'll have another kid in tow and my career path is changing....but after we really evaluated the benefits we've seen from her time at school, we're going to continue Evie at school again next year even though she doesn't technically NEED to attend. We have found a different school for her, but more on that another day....

17 February, 2014

Bump Watch: Week 31

How far along? 31 weeks

How big is baby? check up on Saturday estimates her growth about 1-3 weeks ahead of schedule, which lands us a baby in 6-9 weeks!!

Total weight gain? 22lbs, which puts me at excessive for my BMI, but otherwise in the "normal" range.  I'd gained 40 by now with Evie. Ooof! No wonder I feel so much better this pregnancy

Maternity clothes? I went through and tried on all my spring/summer clothes and am donating a bunch. A lot of them are really big and or I just don't like them. I saved just enough to get me through a few weeks of Spring weather, if it even comes this year.

Stretch marks? Nothing new!

Belly button? Sticking out a little more!

Exercise:  I made a really good effort to walk any day it was nice the last two weeks. It really helped keep the puffiness at bay.

Sleep: I don't want to talk about it. I think I slept through the night twice in the last two weeks, which landed me a terrible cold, which led to more sleepless nights. It's a vicious cycle.

Movement: Lots and Lots! And BIG movements too.  She's head down now. Sometimes I feel her head hitting my pelvis. I hope she knows that's not the exit.

Food cravings: Chocolate covered strawberries

Food aversions: Anything with a smoked flavor. I ate pork a few times, mostly out of desperation because of the snow storm and it was what was in the freezer.

What I miss: Rolling over with ease, a good night's sleep, bending over instead of squatting, tying my shoes without making it a production

What I am looking forward to: Held Alyshia's newborn this week. Played with my 8 month old nephew.  Y'all, I am getting SO excited to meet our girl!!

Milestones: Visible movement - folks across the room can see it!

Say What?
Evie: Mommy, when is baby sister coming over?
Me: It's still going to be a few weeks.
Eric: Evie, how is baby sister getting here?
Evie:  In the car.

Evie: Mommy, when is baby sister coming over?
Me:  I'm not sure, sweetheart.
Evie:  How 'bout in 2 minutes?

Eric and I were taking Evie on a wagon ride around the neighborhood and some random construction guy yelled to Eric, "Hey man, do you need me to build you some bunk beds?"

Sweet moments: Evie and I were snuggling on the couch and she put her finger in my belly button and said, "Mommy, I get sister out now"

Make room for baby: Evie is officially in her big girl room! The walls aren't decorated, but she's in the bed and her clothes are in the dresser. We still use the nursery for diaper changes, but even Evie calls the room "sister's room".   Eric got the toddler bed taken apart, cleaned and put back together as a crib.  In a few weeks I'll wash the bumpers and bedding. 

I organized all the clothes, toys, etc that I have been stocking up for the girls for the spring.  We just need to get the bins down from the attack to finish the inventory of new baby things.  I am holding off on taking the tags off or washing any of the new things. I am terrified we'll have a surprise boy and be stuck with this new stuff.

Oh, and THIS: My blood pressure was awesome at this last check up.  The midwife was really pleased.  I also talked through the whole "when do we call / go to the hospital"  plan with her.  With it being a new practice and having been induced last time I couldn't really remember all the details.  I also learned that this practice shares on-call duty by day of the week, not by patient. So there is only a 2/5 chance either of my midwives will delivery baby girl. Part of me is a little disappointed, and part of me doesn't really care. 

Compared to Evie:

  • Not only had we taken, but we'd received our maternity photos.  I just scheduled them today. Second child syndrome strikes!
  • Still not the bad swelling or water retention, nor the carpel tunnel
  • Feeling much better!  Still have energy!
  • Also, a lot less interaction with strangers about the pregnancy. Maybe it's the two year old hanging on me that scares people :)

13 February, 2014

Here it Goes: My Fears of a Repeat Labor, Delivery and Recovery Experience

With the countdown less than ten weeks until Baby Buergler #2 is due, I had a sudden panic of all the things that "went wrong" with the end of my pregnancy, the labor & delivery, and my recovery.  I am terrified of a repeat.  I have been doing my best to mental prepare, should they, but it was just SO MUCH last time that I am almost in tears again just thinking about a repeat experience.

1. Preeclampsia   

I was diagnosed with preeclampsia around week 36-37 with Evie. It only occurs in about 5-8% of pregnancies. Fortunately once you've had it you're not more likely to get it. Each pregnancy is unique. Still, I know more about now than I did then. It's dangerous (Lady Sybil anyone?).  I am terrified to repeat that: The headaches. The bed rest. The edema. The blood pressure feeling like my body was going to explode.  After a short stint on bed rest I had to be induced. I was also passed back and forth between the doctor and midwife, and neither of them really explained the importance of certain steps of recovery.  In hindsight I think this contributed to my post-partum depression. (See below)

2. Labor & Delivery 

Like I said, I had to be induced. The nurses started the first part of the induction, swearing no one goes into active labor for 12 hours and therefore offered me not one, but two Ambien and Benedryl to help me sleep.  6 hours later I was in full, active labor, and in within 11 hours I was holding my baby girl in my arms.  While I had a Pitocin and Epidural free labor like I wanted, I barely remember any of the process (some say this is a blessing and I agree to a certain extent).  

Honestly, I am terrified. I don't know what to expect as far as real labor goes, nor do I think I can really do a natural child birth again because, well, I don't really remember it.  I feel like a first time mom all over again.  I am letting my head get in the way.  Instead of feeling empowered by a previous natural birth, I am actually overwhelmed by it. 

3. Nursing 

Because of the preeclampsia and the Ambien, it took me a full 24 hours to feel human after having Evie. All I wanted to do was sleep.  I was so, so exhausted.  Meanwhile, the lactation consultants and nurses were forcing Evie on my breast.  My body was so swollen and exhausted.  Evie had a hard time latching... it was all down hill from there.

In hindsight part of our issue was my exhaustion for the first two weeks.  Part of it was the mechanics. My breasts were really swollen and Evie has a lip tie.  All of these contributed to a really challenging experience that landed me exclusively pumping for 6 months.

Looking forward, my breasts have not grown as large as they did last time. I'm also more comfortable with the idea of formula and bottle feeding, so the emotional fight isn't there.  I have also done a lot of reading on some of my errors with Evie, but also more tricks to try and more options we have for success.  Though, all of this is still a huge unknown, and is frustrating for me to try to plan summer activities. I hate not having a plan!

4. Recovery and weight loss

I did not take my recovery seriously.  I did not nap when the baby napped. And because I was trying to both pump and bottle feed Evie, my nights did not include much rest either.  This led to migraines, exhaustion, short tempers, and binge eating to make up for the endorphins normally found in rest and exercise.  The baby weight didn't come off as promised...how could it if I wasn't sleeping or walking, and was binge eating junk?  And this contributed to a horrible body image for several months to follow.

Of these five fears, the likelihood of this "repeating" or not going according to plan, this is the least likely. I know I need to rest, shower, and walk.  And this time I am not afraid to ask for help.

5. Postpartum Depression and Anxiety 

It took about 6-8 weeks for me to admit that I was suffering from this horrible disease.  Having since done research I now know that women who suffer from preeclampsia and/or are on bed rest are more likely to have PPD.  Being cooped up in the house in the winter, and the huge lifestyle change of having a newborn compounded the problem.  And I also now know that binge eating sweets & grains causes many, many Americans to suffer from depression and/or anxiety.  I was put on a series of medications for a little over a year to help break the cycle of depression. In the meantime, I learned which foods can trigger these things so I stopped eating them, and therefore finally lost weight. I was able to get outside again not only to exercise but to interact with people. And so on.  

Folks with a history of depression are more likely to have it again, so I am genuinely concerned about this.  I talked to my midwife, who suggested placenta encapsulation, but I just don't know if I can stomach the idea of that.  I am not above taking the prescription drugs again for a short while, but I hear you should start them in the hospital immediately after birth.  Well, how do I know if I really need them yet?  So, that leaves me with trying to eat low grains, low processed foods, and hope that it continues to work.

What worries me the most is that PPD&A was an underlying factor to my recovery, weight loss, and breastfeeding issues.  It was interwoven into my life for several months.  I am fearful of those panic attacks, or crying spells, or hating my child.  It was heartbreaking.  I wouldn't wish it on anyone.

While this is a very serious, very long term concern, it's also something I am humble enough to admit and quickly ask for help should the need arise.  I hope that if it happens again I will be able to recognize it sooner and have a better starting point with a medicine and dosage to get the most relief the fastest. 

More on these issues as they unfolded two years ago -- Expectations of Motherhood and On the State of Me: Four Months Post-partum

10 February, 2014

Daddy-Daughter Date Night

Our local Chick-fil-as host an annual Daddy-Daughter Date Night.  Eric had been excited to take Evie since we learned about this when she was just 3 months old. Last year she was still too little, but this year was JUST RIGHT!  

Saturday morning I started preparing Evie for her special night. I told her all about how she'd wear a special dress, put a bow in her hair and wear her ruffly socks.  I also told her Daddy would get dressed up in his fancy suit and tie and the two of them would go out for a yummy dinner.

 She was SO EXCITED!  She talked about it all day. She kept asking questions.  Like, would they take Daddy's car?  Was Mommy going?  And would there be ice cream? (Girl has standards, I tell you).

After her nap I started getting her dressed.  She was giddy with excitement as she remembered about her special night out.

Eric came by her room and "picked her up" for their date, but I couldn't let them leave with out a few photos.

Off they went!

Eric said Chick-fil-a did a nice job by providing table service, little conversation starters more geared towards the older girls, and treat bags and flowers for all the girls.

He said there was a range of ages from Evie's age to fourteen-ish. And a variety of dress - polo shirts to suit jackets, and little girls in all sorts of dresses.

They had a great night. Evie came home excited to tell me all about her ice cream with sprinkles and her rose that she held the whole way home.

I am so glad these two are building a solid foundation to their Daddy-Daughter relationship.  I can't wait for baby sister to join them in a few years. In the meantime, I hope Evie and Eric set their calendar for the occasional date night, with or without Chick-fil-a's special event.

07 February, 2014

Saturday Funday: Evie's New Hair Cut!

To keep with our new years resolution, our weekly Funday outing was to my salon for hair cuts!  

Evie had her first hair cut about 11 months ago in preparation for Aunt Katie's wedding. It was mostly to cut off the scraggly new born hair ends.  I cut it in the late Fall but it was pretty crooked. We decided to splurge on a fun trip to the salon for a really good cut before baby sister arrives.

We'd watched the Small Potatoes Hair Cut episode a million times in preparation, so Evie was SO excited to meet my stylist and get her hair cut.  The girl who cuts my hair has two daughters about Evie's age so I knew she'd be great with Evie.

She did the consultation on the booster seat and then we walked Evie over to the shampoo bowl, but she was terrified. Hey, it was worth the shot.

 When we got back to the chair, Evie wanted to sit with me.  She did really well for the first 10 minutes and then it was like a wrestling match.  I almost regretted asking for little layers in the back, but I knew a little extra fight up front was worth the shorter hair that would be easier to brush every night after bath time.

 Eric held her for the last few minutes and Akosua finished evening out the front.  You can tell Evie was DONE!

 Once we finished and she saw the finished product in the mirror, she was giddy. She kept squealing and jumping up and down.

I could not even believe how much hair she cut off!  When all was said and done, she got a good two-three inches off the back!
 It looks SO cute.  I can't believe how much more grown up Evie looks.  And my goodness. It was worth the struggle at the salon. It is SO much easier to wash, dry, brush, style.  Whew.

 Pretty girls after our hair cuts!

Here's two more as the week had progressed. Still has that fresh from the salon look!

Hopefully the next trip is a little less wiggly, but even if it's not, I think she did great for being two years old at mommy's salon! And a big thanks to Akosua for her patience and extra care for Evie!