Monday, May 4, 2015

Alex: 1 Week

If this first week is any indication, my little guy is going to be one before I blink!! Babies sure grow fast - and this time around, it seems even more quickly! I thought I'd share my little guy's 1 week old pictures!! We didn't weigh him at 1 week - but we were at the doctors office two days later, so we'll use that weight.

Date: April 29th, 2015
Weight: 8 pounds 4 ounces
Height: 19 inches
Sleeping: Mostly 3.5 to 4 hours at a time. At night, he's sleeping from about 11 p.m. to 3:30/4 a.m. and then until about 7:30 a.m. I'm amazed at how he's sleeping so solidly. We have definitely noticed that he sleeps longer when his little tummy is full. He likes to sleep snuggled up on someone's chest. 
Eating: Between 2 and 3 ounces per feeding. He eats in between naps, and is a great burper! He is a noisy eater, which is really funny to listen to. Right now, we are using Avent Natural Bottles with the Level 1 Nipple, designed for newborns. We tried a level 2, for one month olds, and while he did okay with it, we were worried that he was eating too quickly. He also takes the opportunity while he's eating to take care of pooping! It's so nice that he doesn't do that while he's napping. 
Development: Right now, he mostly sleeps, eats, and goes to the bathroom. He is able to lift his head for brief moments, and can already move it from side to side.
Concerns: At his initial checkup with our pediatrician, we found out that Alex has a small hole in his heart. It's a VSD - a Ventricula Septal Defect. It's fairly common in newborns, and usually they close on their own within days of birth. His hasn't closed completely yet, but we are just keeping an eye on it at this point. But, we did have to go get an echo scan of his heart.
Reagan: Still loves being a big sister!! Truly, she has adapted so well to having Alex home with us. First thing she does when she gets home from preschool or when she wakes up is to check on Alex. Anytime we change his diaper, she is right there, wanting to help. She loves to go and get a bottle out of the fridge for us or get his pacifer or blanket. She loves to give him kisses, and likes to 'read' to him. I love seeing how much she loves being a big sister! I'm sure it won't last or be consistent all the time, but it has been a great start for our family of four.
Just for fun, this is Reagan at about 8 pounds on the left and Alex!! I love how they look alike - and I didn't even realize it until I saw my Timehop!
Firsts: This week, Alex got to ride in his daddy's brand new truck. We think he liked it - although he slept through the whole thing.
Favorites: He loves his pacifier! We have been using it after he eats, and it really helps him clear out his mouth of any formula. It also really soothes him when he's going to sleep.
Cuteness: All the time! Seriously - he's plain ol' adorable. I love how he wrinkles his forehead when he's sleeping. He gets these three adorable lines across his forehead, and raises his eyebrows.
A Day in the Life: Right now, life is pretty chill for Alex. He eats breakfasts, snuggles for a while, and then naps for three hours in the morning. Then, he eats again, and is more alert and awake.... usually for about an hour before he falls asleep for a couple of hours. He takes another bottle, and usually falls right asleep after that feeding. Mid-afternoon, he takes another bottle, and has another period where he is more alert, for about an hour or so before falling asleep until about 6:30 or 7. He eats again, and sometimes will stay awake for a half hour or so before sleeping until 10ish, when we feed him and put him down for the night. We have been doing tummy time when he is alert and awake.

My little man is such a blessing - I love being his mommy!! I always pictured having a little boy, and he has brought so much joy to our family. 

Friday, May 1, 2015

Introducing Alex!

He's here!!!!
I'd like to introduce yall to my little man, Edmund Alexander IV - or Alex!!!
Born on April 22nd, 2015 at 1:36 p.m., weighing in at 8 pounds 1 oz and 18.5 inches long.
We are so in love with this little man. He truly completes our family! Alex is named after his daddy, but we are using his middle name. He and his daddy also share their birthday! That's right - he came on his daddy's birthday!

From the beginning, everything about my little man has been so different than our experience with his big sister. My pregnancy was so much easier, and we made it full term! I was 39 weeks and 2 days when he arrived. I'm so thankful for a 'normal' pregnancy - as my OBGYN joked in the operating, I behaved and followed directions! The day of our c-section, we had a nice leisurely morning with Reagan. We dropped her off at preschool and then headed over to the hospital. We had a scheduled c-section with Alex. Due to the emergency c-section we had with Reagan, I could not go into full labor and medically required another c-section. Truthfully, I was okay with this because I really wasn't looking forward to the whole pushing and major contractions part. I had been having Braxton Hicks contractions for a couple weeks prior to his birth, and had some regular contractions in the five days prior but nothing full on. We arrived at the hospital at 10:30 - and leisurely walked up to the labor and delivery wing. Because I had pre-registered online (who knew you could do that?), all we had to do was fill out 1 paper and we were escorted to the labor and delivery area. The charge nurse got us mostly ready - did our family background intake and got my IV in. My mom and mother-in-law arrived, and the four of us had plenty of time to relax while they were getting things ready for our 1:00 delivery time.
My OBGYN arrived and came to chat with us for a few minutes, and we also talked with the anesthesiologist and the nurse anesthetist. At about 10 till 1, the staff got Edmund some scrubs so he could be in the operating room, and I WALKED to the operating room. Yup. I was super excited to get to go in on my own two feet. Such a difference from being wheeled in from the ICU. At about 1:00pm, I received my spinal and the staff starting getting things ready. I felt really calm and excited going in to the operating room but as the spinal began, I started getting a little anxious. I must've asked for Edmund four or five times... he's my rock and really calms me down. The nurse anesthetist told me she would go get him, even though it was a little earlier than when they usually go get the daddies. Edmund told me later that she came over to get him, and said that he was needed now...  He came in and I immediately started to calm down some. My OBGYN let me pick the choice of music in the operating room, so we jammed out to country music throughout the delivery. Again, totally different than with Reagan's birth.
I managed to cry throughout the entire delivery. Yup. Such a range of emotions that go through you. My OBGYN and the delivery room staff were fantastic - they kept me informed throughout the entire process without overwhelming me. The nurse anesthetist was the one who talked to primarily throughout the c-section and she was super calming. I held Edmund's hand pretty much the whole time.
At 1:36 p.m., our little man arrived - hollering loudly - to David Lee Murphy's song, "Dust on the Bottle". My doctor held him up over the screen so I could see him and give him a kiss - and then they got him all cleaned up. Edmund went over and got to hold him skin to skin right away - and brought him right back over by me. I got to hold my little boy's hands while Edmund held him. It was .... incredible. There are no words for how I felt at that time. After about 5 minutes or so (maybe a few minutes longer - time seemed to stand still), Edmund and Alex left the operating room so the pediatrician could do Alex's apgar and initial tests, etc. The staff finished up with me, and at precisely 2:00pm, I was wheeled into recovery where Edmund and the grandmas were waiting with Alex. Within minutes, I was snuggling with my little man.
Right off the bat, Alex has been an eating champion. He had his first bottle around 2:15 - and took to it instantly. We were wheeled over to the 'nesting place' - basically, the recovery ward for new mommas and babies right around 3pm. Over the new 48 hours, we both handled our recovery well! The care we received was wonderful - and I loved that we were given the option to go home on Friday since we were both doing so well. From start to finish, we were literally at the hospital almost exactly 48 hours.
Everything felt so relaxed and calm throughout the entire birth. Both Edmund and I commented on how this must be what it's like for most people - and truth be told, I don't know that we would have valued the calmness as much if we had not had such a complicated birth situation with Reagan.

I am so blessed by the birth of my beautiful baby boy - and so thankful for all that my little family has been given.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Zip Zip Zippers

Hey yall!! Does anyone else ever have just a short amount of time at their sewing machine - and you just want to finish something? Some days, I only have a few minutes to sew and create.... and I find it harder to pull out those bigger projects on those days.

With a couple of swaps coming up, I have been wanting to practice making some fun zipper pouches to send along with my main swap items. I used this tutorial by See Kate Sew as my starting point for both of these pouches.
For the first pouch, I used the same measurements that Kate suggests - even though I had to trim up my pretty patchwork blocks. While I LOVE how it looks, its pretty lightweight and I am not sure how long it will hold up. I'm using it in my purse to hold all my lip glosses, etc. that I seem to collect.
The patchwork blocks are only on one side - I used the Raspberry Kiss block from Wooden Spoons Quilts. I adore this block and will probably end up using it several more times!
When I made the second pouch, I made a few modifications to it, and I am really pleased with how this one turned out. It's much sturdier and I think it will probably be better suited for daily use.
I used the Simple Heart block by Cluck Cluck Sew for both the front and back of this pouch. I choose to keep the pouch the same size as the block - although I did end up trimming it down just a smidge. I love how this block has a frame for the heart - and around Valentine's Day, I saw several really cute projects using this block. I have a few ideas in mind that I'm adding to my "someday sew" list!
The biggest change I made to the zipper pouch (aside from changing the size) was that I added interfacing to my pouch. I used Pellon SF 101 and interfaced each outer panel as well as each lining panel. It really makes this little pouch sturdy! I think when I make some for my upcoming swaps, I will probably only interface the outer panels.... that might be a happy medium.
This might be my new favorite thing to sew! They are a quick sew and such a fun way to play around with fabric!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Easter Memories

We really enjoyed celebrating Easter with our Reagan this year! It was her first time dying Easter eggs - and she had such a blast! We kept it pretty simple with her, and I'm glad we did. It was just right! 

We did a kit for the dye, and just used the pastel level (where you dissolve the tablets with water instead of vinegar). She loved putting the eggs into the dye.... I think she had the most fun watching the eggs spin in the colored water. Her first color pick was the orange!
On Sunday, we did our Easter egg hunt after church - and she had so much fun! My brother hid the eggs out back, and she was really quick to find most of the 11 eggs. She only needed some pointing for a couple of the eggs. After she found them all, Reagan wanted to hide them again so she could find them! It was so adorable!

We are so blessed by this vivacious little girl! 
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