Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Caring Bridge site for Louisa

I've started a Caring Bridge site for Louisa.  I decided to update there rather than here because it is easier for me to post updates via my phone on that site.  Since she will be in the hospital for several days, being able to post updates with my phone is critical.


There is a "donate" button on the caring bridge page.  Please know that if you donate, it goes to fund caring bridge.  It does NOT go to us.  (There was some confusion about this, which is why I mention it.)

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Two Months

Louisa is two months old!  She has just started social smiling - holy moly is she adorable.  She will look at you intensely and then break into a huge grin.  She's been sticking her tongue out, too.

Weight: I'm guessing around 9 pounds.  She has her well-check on Thursday - I'll edit that in then.

Height: Tall.  Last week in the hospital she was 90th percentile for height.

Size: 0-3 month.  Her NB and "large" preemie clothes fit but since she's connected to things I prefer to put her in clothes that are a little bit baggier.

Favorite things: her pacifiers.  We have three different kinds that we rotate.  Since she is not taking anything by mouth now I have really been pushing the pacifiers.  I want her to be okay with having something in her mouth and not to get hooked on any one type.  This way if we are able to ditch the tube and go back to bottle feeding she'll be able to adapt faster.  (That's my theory, anyway.)  Louisa also LOVES a lap.  It doesn't matter much whose lap she's on just so long as she's snuggled up to someone.

Least favorite things: being put down, being on her back.  Louisa is still battling the GERD monster.  The NJ tube and prevacid have helped minimally.  We are able to put her on her back to change her diaper without being afraid that she will choke.  Otherwise her symptoms are much the same.  At this point someone is holding her 18+ hours a day, usually more like 20 hours.  We have people come over to hold her so that I can get up for an hour or so.  Alice also likes to hold her.   

Monday, November 5, 2012

Well, it's been a week.  I'm going to write this in list form because I have a limited amount of baby-free time.

- Louisa was admitted to the hospital on Tuesday for GERD directly from her appointment with the gastroenterologist.  Yup, hospitalized for reflux.  This is the King Kong of reflux, though.  On the bell curve, she is faaaaaar to the right in severity, as you will see. 

- Louisa had an NJ tube placed on Halloween.  This is to preserve her lungs (because she was aspirating) and to give the doctors a good chance at finding a medicine that will help her.

- Tube will be in for 4-6 weeks and then we'll see.  Options are as follows: 1. she gets the tube out and resumes bottle feeding.  2. She keeps the NJ for a little bit longer.  3. She needs surgery and gets a more permanent tube placed in her stomach.  3-1/2. We put the surgery off but she gets the more permanent tube placed in her stomach.

- She is now on Elecare.  It will cost $120 a WEEK.  Pray that insurance covers it.

- Louisa is on a heart / lung monitor 21 hours a day (we take 3 hours off in the morning.).  She is seeing a pulmonologist who we LOVE.

- She is still quite a little snuggle bug.  I don't think you could find a sweeter baby.

- We are doing okay.  We have had lots of help from our church and from our friends and that has made an enormous difference.

Here are some pictures.

My beautiful girls.

"I'm home and I'm beautiful!"

Sitting in the bouncy for the first time without screaming.  Hip hip hooray!!!

Home health gave us the pump and everything that goes along with it....  except for a backpack.  They were out of backpacks.  My options were to be tied to home until the backpacks came in or to make my own.  I made my own.  (We've got places to go and people to see!)  This is the Toddler Backpack pattern by Made By Rae.  It was fast and easy.

I modified it a little bit to work with a feeding pump:
Bound buttonholes for the tubing to come out and a loop of webbing with a snap to hold coiled up extra tubing.

I changed the loop at the top so that I can snap it to the stroller handle.

A loop of webbing that snaps on the inside to hold the bag of formula.

We took it for a spin yesterday and it worked well and was stylish to boot.  If you've got to be hooked up to crazy hardware, best to do it in style.  When I take L to the pulmonologist on Wednesday I'll try to get a picture of her setup in the stroller.


Sunday, October 28, 2012

Wool pants!

Louisa is now 6 weeks old / one week old adjusted age.  Still a snuggle bunny.  She has gotten big enough that we are starting to transition her into cloth diapers.  I've got pockets (which don't fit her that well still), a few fitteds (which are surprisingly great.  I'm going to sew a few more and hope that I love them as much as the "real" ones I bought used.), and 2 dozen newborn prefolds with snappis.  For covers we have fallen in love with wool.  We are NOT in love with the price of wool, though!  I do not blame the WAHM's at all for charging what they charge for knitting up longies, but we can't swing paying that to keep Louisa in pants.  I scored a few wool covers and a pair of longies on consignment for not too much $$.  My mom has knit up a cover for us (yay!) and I'm starting to sew some out of sweaters we have picked up at thrift stores.  Here is my first pair of sewn wool longies.

Ugly sweater.  When we picked it up it took us a minute to figure out which was the neck hole.

Louisa in her new cute wool pants and Halloween top.  The pants pattern is Fishsticks Designs Little One Layette.  Her top was my first applique project with my embroidery unit.  Louisa is looking big, isn't she?!  She's pretty much outgrown the preemie stuff.  The onesie she has on is newborn size and I made the pants 0-3 month.  The pants are large - all the better to fit her longer!    

Friday, October 12, 2012

4 Weeks Old / -1 Week Adjusted

Tomorrow Louisa will be 4 weeks old.  I can't believe that it's already been 4 weeks.  It's strange to think that my due date is not for another week.

Weight: 7 pounds
Height: 19-1/2 inches
Size: preemie and a few newborn things are starting to fit
Things she likes: Mommy!  Nursing, but only when she is calm.  Being held.  Being swaddled.
Things she dislikes: Anything that involves being flat on her back: Louisa's got some wicked GERD going on.  Her car seat.  Baths.

Alice reading to Louisa
That is my sock on Louisa's hand.  She was mesmerized by the colors (says big sister).

The Lazy Trinity

At my baby shower - which turned into a "meet the baby" shower!  

Monday, September 17, 2012

Guess Who?!

Louisa Jane was born on Thursday, September 13th at 35 weeks.  I started having (more) regular contractions on Wednesday night on my way home from our symphony performance.  When I went in to be checked out at the hospital, my blood pressure was going up and up and up, so it was time to deliver. 

Louisa had no NICU time!!!!!  She got a little bit of oxygen right after she was born, but that is IT!  We took her home on Saturday after the UT / FL game started, but before it ended.  (The hospital is a few blocks from the stadium.  They didn't want us to have to deal with game day traffic, lol.)  As they wheeled me out of the hospital WITH the baby, I started sobbing.  What a gift to come out of this with a cordless, take-home baby.   

Louisa is doing so amazingly well that it is easy for us to forget that she is 5 weeks early.  The only problematic areas are sleeping and eating.  She would much rather sleep than eat.  We have wake her every three hours to eat.  This includes setting an alarm throughout the night.  Her sucking reflex is not quite there yet and she's still getting the hang of the whole suck / swallow / breathe thing.  She gets tired VERY quickly and will fall asleep after eating 1/4 of an ounce if we let her.  Luckily, we learned ninja feeding skills with Alice.  We can usually cajole her into eating an entire ounce.  Right now that takes 30-40 minutes, but she'll catch on.

My two beautiful girls.

Friday, September 7, 2012

34 weeks and change

34 weeks!  This seems so surreal.  The closer I get to my due date the more I can't believe that this is actually happening this time.  So, here is a quick update on what has gone on in the past month.

- I switched from Lovenox to Heparin yesterday.  Heparin is safer to be on close to delivery.  The OB's that I'm seeing usually switch women from one to the other at 36 weeks.  I switched two weeks early because of my history of premature birth.  Huge sigh of relief when I made the switch last night.  The people at the pharmacy must have thought I was nuts because I was so excited to fill that prescription.  I was really afraid of going into labor on Lovenox.  It would have been okay, but I've got a lot more options with heparin.  It clears the body faster so, say, if I had to have a c-section I would be able to be awake for it and not have to go under general.  (Any spinal aneasthesia is a no-no on Lovenox.  It can cause paralysis.)  Downsides of heparin - it's twice daily and the syringes are NOT pre-filled.  Even with the crash course the pharmacist gave me on how to load the things it took me a good 20 minutes last night before I was able to draw up the medicine without a gigantic air bubble.  Thank goodness for youtube.  You also bruise more on heparin.  On the bright side, the injections don't hurt at all.  Lovenox burns.  Heparin doesn't.  At least not yet.

- LJ weighs just about 6 pounds now.  She is practicing breathing and has passed all of her biophysical profiles with flying colors.  She still likes to suck her thumb and fist. 

- I went for monitoring on Monday and discovered that I was having contractions every 4 - 5 minutes and not feeling them at all.  I'm still working (Sweeny Todd performances just about every night.) but otherwise I've got my feet up.  This really threw me because with Alice there was no prolonged preterm labor.  My water broke and she was born 6 hours later.  It has been difficult for me to slow down.  I would love to get past 36 weeks, though, so my attitude is "whatever it takes."  Reading and sewing are my main pastimes these days.

- Monday was a wake-up call for Tim and I.  When the nurse at the hospital said, "Well, your baby looks great, but you're having a lot of contractions.  I need to run this by the OB to see if you can go home or not." I started to panic.  We had so much to do to get ready.  I had a small emergency bag packed just in case, but nothing else was done.  So, after I got home (phew!) Tim got the crib up, we bought a few things that we needed and we packed hospital bags for us and an overnight bag for Alice.  Tim installed the car seats.  I have some sewing I'd love to finish, but that is the icing on the cake.

- I've got some crib sheets nearly sewn and a quilt almost done.  I'll post some pictures when I finish them!         

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

30 week appointment and Alice update

Today I had my 30 week appointment, an ultrasound to check the babies growth, and the dreaded gestational diabetes test.  Everything went incredibly well.  I passed the GD test with flying colors.  I'm so glad because in a few weeks I have to switch from Lovenox injections (once a day) to heparin injections (twice a day) and the thought of torturing my poor belly with insulin injections on top of that was making me very sad.  Baby weighs just shy of 3-1/2 pounds now.  She is in the 55th %-tile for weight.  Heartbeat was great, movement was great.  My fluid level is perfect and the placenta is functioning fine.  PHEW!  Two slight bumps in the appt: my BP was up the first time they took it.  The nurse had me lie on my left side for 5-10 minutes and then took it again.  It went down enough to satisfy everyone.  I'm still having to watch it, though.  They also checked my iron today and it was low.  No iron pills at this time, just an advisement to increase my consumption of red meat.  Red meat and taking it easy - I think I can handle that.  : )

Overall I couldn't ask for a better appointment.  In fact, this is the week I was supposed to start bi-weekly appointments, but the OB was so impressed by how well the baby and I are doing that I have a whole two weeks off!  My next appointment is the 20th.  I have Monday / Thursday appointments scheduled from then until a week before my due date (Oct 18).  Mondays are non-stress tests and Thursdays are ultrasounds.  I'm not sure if I'll see a doctor both days or only on ultrasound days.  One of the nurses commented that things were about to get hard in this last stretch since I would have so many appointments.  I just laughed.  This is gravy.  I am so thrilled to be at this point and to be doing so well.  Her comment made me think about everything I've done and gone through so far with this pregnancy:
*185 injections
* 3 stints of bedrest
* 1 middle of the night trip to labor and delivery
* 26 doctor's appointments
* 24 blood draws
* 6 ultrasounds
* hyperemesis to the point of dehydration and significant weight loss

No, I'm not just starting the marathon now.  This is my victory lap.


Alice is doing better.  She is still having pain on and off, mostly off these days, thankfully.  There were no significant findings from any of the tests that the GI ran.  We will consult with her pediatrician at the end of the month to talk about what to do next.  Meanwhile we are keeping her diet the same (for now) and have started giving her a b vitamin complex every day.  Tim and I both have genetic mutations that inhibit our bodies from processing b vitamins.  (We found this out when we were undergoing testing for multiple miscarriages.)  I have a double mutation; I'm not sure if Tim's is double or single.  Either way, Alice has at least one mutation from me.  We had talked about starting her on a b vitamin, but I couldn't find a kids stand-alone formula.  A few days ago I was looking up information on MTHFR (our mutation) and saw that two of the symptoms of a vit. b deficiency are mouth sores and stomach pain.  Hmmmm.  So, we'll try this and see if it helps. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

26 week appt update

I had my 26 week appointment yesterday.  Overall it went amazingly well, especially since I had landed at Labor and Delivery the night before with bleeding.  They kept me on the monitors for an hour or so and then let me go.  Of course Baby, who had decided to doubly scare me by not moving at all, started punching the sensor as soon as they strapped it to my belly.  I sat there watching the thing jump off my skin because she was punching it so hard.  Yesterday I had an ultrasound to check for growth.  Baby weighs 2 pounds (56th %tile), my fluid is fine, and the placenta is great.  They had no explanation for the bleeding.  No bedrest right now, but I am supposed to take it easy.   

I found out what the plan for my Lovenox shots is.  I will take Lovenox until 36 weeks and then switch to heparin.  Starting with my next appointment I will be having twice weekly appointments - one for ultrasound and one for non-stress test.  If there are any signs of pre-term labor they will switch me to heparin earlier.  Heparin clears the body faster than Lovenox, which is good.  With Lovenox any spinal anaesthesia is a no-no because it can cause paralysis.  Thus, epidurals are not possible with Lovenox nor are spinal blocks.  If I had to have a C-section it would have to be under general.  The stinky thing about heparin is that you have to inject twice a day.  My poor belly has had just about enough of these injections.  I am really hoping that I pass the gestational diabetes test because I can't imagine having to inject insulin in addition to lovenox / heparin.

My blood pressure was lower than it has been.  I'm going to start monitoring it at home so that we can catch it if it starts to creep.

Next appointment is at 30 weeks (!) unless my bp starts to rise or I have more bleeding.     

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Alice is having an upper GI scope and colonoscopy on Monday.  All prayers are appreciated.  We're hoping to get some answers to the chronic abdominal pain that is making her miserable.

On a much lighter note - here is our garden!  I have nothing to do with this.  Tim and Alice do all the dirty work and I process the harvest.  Seems to work well for us.  A few weekends ago I canned 10 and 1/2 pints of German red cabbage.  Looks like the tomatillos are getting ready to pick, so I will be canning salsa verde in the near future.  Right now I've got a batch of watermelon pickles going from yesterday's obligatory 4th of July watermelon.  I've also got a bee in my bonnet to get the peaches DONE.  Canned peaches and peach pie filling were our hands down favorite thing of anything I canned last year.  (Well...  The salsa I put up was pretty amazing, too.  That was Tim's favorite thing.)  It was so nice to have those jars of summer goodness in January and February.  Every time I have an OB appointment looming I feel like I have to get things done NOW just in case I wind up having my activities restricted.  Next OB appointment is Tuesday.  I expect I'll put some peaches up this weekend.

One view of the garden.  The picture doesn't do justice to how enormous the garden is.  

Tomatillos.  Tim had no idea what these were.  They looked interesting, so he decided to grow them.  They have taken off - exciting to me because green salsa is delicious!

Regular tomatoes.  I can't tell you how many plants Tim put in - 8 or 10?  He really liked my salsa last year.

All hail the bizarre rhubarb plant!  I have no idea what that giant stalk in the middle is.  Also, I thought rhubarb was a spring plant.  This rhubarb did nothing all spring and then suddenly went nuts a few weeks ago.  This is year 3 for the plant, so it will be the first year we can harvest.  I'm waiting for the stalks to get a little bit thicker.

This is a peach tree growing out of our compost pile.  We did not plant it.  Eventually Tim will move it and if we're lucky maybe we will get some peaches in a few years!

Alice's flower garden - a little wilty from all the heat.  

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

22 week update: We FINALLY had our "big" ultrasound last week and..... It's another girl! We were very surprised - both Tim and I thought it was a boy. I don't know why we were so sure, maybe because the last baby we lost was a boy. The baby looks perfect. Ultrasounds have gotten a whole lot more detailed in 8 years! We saw just about every part of her, including inside her brain. She's a pretty laid back baby. When we were looking at her, the ultrasound tech had obviously woken her up. She kept yawning and stretching her arms above her head.

My blood pressure is starting to creep ever so slightly. Some of this is "white coat syndrome" - whenever a health professional comes at me with the blood pressure cuff I can feel my heart start to race. Everything was good enough, though, that I once again have a 4 week long leash before my next appointment! Amazing! Even though everything has been going so well this time, I'm always in awe when I go in and everything is fine. My next appointment is July 10th. I'll have another ultrasound to check growth since the clotting disorders I have can cause growth restriction. The OB did say that if my BP stays where it is or goes higher she will start to worry. Keep your fingers crossed for me! I want to stay on my feet as long as I can and get this baby as far as possible!


Alice update: Alice is having reflux problems again. My poor baby has ulcers down her throat. She's been referred back to the pediatric GI doc. Meanwhile she's got some medicine that is helping at least a little bit and she is on a soft foods / non-acidic diet. Suggestions of what to feed her are welcomed! The higher the calories the better. She only eats a few bites at a time and she just doesn't have a whole lot of wiggle room weight-wise.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Afterschooling, Summer Edition

This year our afterschooling fell by the wayside. Alice was challenged enough at school that she didn't really need anything extra at home. This summer is a different story. We went without a schedule for a week. By the end of it we were both cranky and at ends with each other and with what to do. We aren't able to be out and about too much because when I am on my feet for more than 10 minutes at a time my leg starts to go numb. (Baby is sitting on a nerve. Not dangerous, but annoying and somewhat painful.) Alice thrives on a schedule. This has always been true. So, we're afterschooling this summer to bring some structure to our days. Every day she * cleans her room for 15 minutes * makes her bed * works in her math book (Singapore Math Practice 2A / Grade 3) This is review of what she learned this past school year. When I asked Alice what she wanted to learn this summer she said she wanted to review math. They covered a lot of tricky things this year - regrouping, multiplication, division, fractions. Alice was fine at all of it but didn't completely master any of it. I think a summer review will give her confidence going into next year. * reads for 15 minutes about a science topic of her choosing * reads for 15 minutes about a social studies / history / geography topic of her choosing * reads for 45 minutes to an hour each night before bed any book she wants * does a couple of pages in her note reading workbook * letter writing / "organized" art projects / field trips happen several times a week We also watch an episode of Mythbusters most days... Physics and math in action, right?! I have her pick science and social studies / history / geography topics to stick with for a week. We check out a bunch of books at the library so that she can get as in-depth as she wants. Her reading spins off into other projects (of her choosing. I only require the 15 minutes of reading) - this week she decided she wanted to learn about the White House, presidents and first ladies. She wrote a letter to President Obama and has been designing her own White House. For science she chose the solar system (Neptune, particularly) and has done all sorts of art projects related to that. It's fun to see her applying what she's reading. This schedule allows for plenty of free time. It's also flexible. A few days ago she did her 15 minute room cleaning and then wanted to keep going. Was I really going to say, "No, I don't want you to clean your room anymore. Come do math." ?! NO WAY! She spent a couple of hours cleaning up her room. We ditched the rest of the schedule for the day.

Monday, May 21, 2012

19 weeks

I didn't update after my appointment last week because there wasn't much to say... Everything looks great. My hyperemesis is gone. Now I'm fine as long as I eat every couple of hours. I'm having to eat a substantial snack before bed because otherwise I wake up in the middle of the night needing to eat IMMEDIATELY. I've got snacks stashed everywhere - my purse, the cars, my viola case, my bedside stand - just in case I suddenly need to eat something. It's nice to be able to eat again. My blood pressure is holding steady with a nice low systolic over a moderately high diastolic. I think it was 112 / 82 at my last appointment. To me this is weird, but it's been consistent and they don't seem concerned so I'm not going to worry about it! With pre-eclampsia they look at the overall numbers and also at how your numbers jump from appointment to appointment. Consistency is a good thing. So, things are going quite well. So well, in fact, that my doctor proclaimed she didn't need to see me for a whole four weeks! I would celebrate this except that my BIG ultrasound is at my next appointment. It was supposed to be at 20 weeks, now it is scheduled for 22. We are anxious to find out if this baby is a boy or girl! This baby is teaching us patience.

Friday, May 4, 2012

When Speck of Dust is born, it will get my sewing room. (I don't really mind.) I surveyed the room a few days ago, though, and I've got a lot of stuff in there! I'm trying to use fabric NOW so that I can fit into a smaller space. This dress goes together so fast. I've made three so far and I'm planning to make several more for Alice, Maggie, and various other little girls in my life. Alice has requested that I monkey with the pattern to come up with a version for her American Girl dolls, so that is on my to-do list. Here is my first attempt. As-is, the neckline is a little too low on Alice. It's also a tad too roomy on her. 100_1095 Attempt #2. I raised the neckline by an inch or so and was more generous using my seam allowances. Much better fit. 100_1097 Here is the back: 100_1099 I've finished a 3rd one and if I can convince Alice to model it I'll edit in some pictures. Cute, huh? The pattern is a download from Lil Blue Boo.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

14 week appointment

Hooray for the 2nd trimester!!!!! There were many times over the past several years that I never thought I'd get here!

I had my first visit with the new OB today. I loved her. She is really, really great. (Completely the opposite of that horrible nurse.) She is also (more importantly) very on top of things. Here's the recap:

My next appointment is in 4 weeks, when I will be 18 weeks. That will be my last normal appointment. After that I will have appointments and ultrasounds every 1 - 2 weeks (starting at 20 weeks) through the end of the 2nd trimester. 2 weeks if things are going well, less if they feel like I need to be watched more carefully.

Starting in the 3rd trimester (27/28 weeks) I will have twice weekly appointments / ultrasounds until delivery.

We will be able to fill up a photo album before the child is even born.

Why all the appointments? Well, this is a high risk pregnancy. I've already had one preemie due to pre-term labor, I had pre-eclampsia in my last pregnancy, and I have multiple clotting disorders. What this means is that I'm at a higher risk for things like pre-term labor, pre-eclampsia, fetal growth restriction, problems with the placenta, and low amniotic fluid.

Scary, yes. BUT I will be watched like a hawk. I have also developed a loud mouth since Alice was born. I am not afraid to speak up to doctors and to advocate for myself (or my child) when I feel that something is wrong. I have friends who have had similar medical issues who have done very well, so this CAN be done. We're choosing optimism.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Smarty Pants

Yesterday I had my first visit at the regular OB's office. They did an ultrasound. Baby looks great - it is most definitely a thumb sucker. After that the tech asked me for a urine sample. You'll never guess what they did with it... A pregnancy test! It came back positive, thank GOD, because if it hadn't I would really be concerned about the THING growing in my belly.

I told Alice about this and she thought it was hilarious. Then she became very sober and said, "You know, Mom, maybe you should go to a different doctor. I don't think this one is very smart."

For what it's worth, I didn't actually see a doctor this time. It was an orientation appointment that normally takes place at 6 or 7 weeks. I will see the OB for the first time next week for my 12 week appointment. I will be 14 weeks....


A few weeks ago Alice was lamenting that she was frustrated because she hadn't met her reading speed goal on a computer program at school. We asked her how many words per minute she was reading. 178. The goal was 212. This seemed crazy to us, so Tim looked up some statistics.

The average 2nd grader is reading 90 words per minute at the END of 2nd grade when tested on 2nd grade level material.

Average 5th graders read 130 words per minute at the end of 5th grade.

Adults read between 200 - 300 words per minute.

Alice was very excited to tell me that she met her speed goal today. She is now reading 214 words per minute on above level reading material.

Wow. Just wow.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Me: Ugh. I feel sick...

Alice: Did you take a Secretariat? You should really take a Secretariat. Or maybe 1/2 a Secretariat.

(I'm taking zofran and phenergan for nausea. They are definitely not horse pills...)


Me: Did you know the baby is getting fingerprints this week?

A: Really? Wow..... What if it doesn't get fingerprints?

Me: Um. I guess it wouldn't be able to pick things up very easily.

A: Well, Daddy has arches on his fingerprints but you and I have whorls on ours. I wonder what Speck of Dust will have..... What if it has ALIEN fingerprints?!?!

Me: (trying to figure out how the heck she knows what kinds of fingerprints we all have) Huh?

A: You know, aliens??? Like, from outer space??? I'm going to be really mad if Speck of Dust has alien fingerprints.

Me: okay... Why?

A: (looking at me like I'm an idiot) Because I want alien fingerprints.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Speck of Dust

Did you see I changed the blog title???

Did you guess why???

(I bet you did...)

With the grace of God, we will have an addition to our family this October.

Speck of Dust is no longer as small as a speck of dust - it is more olive sized. The name came to be when Alice guessed that I was pregnant very soon after I found out. We had wished to keep the news from her longer, but when she guessed we saw no reason to try to cover things up. My early pregnancies are rather involved - bi-weekly doctors appointments and a regimen of too many pills and daily injections. This time, too, I have been incredibly sick. I think it was less stressful for Alice to deal with the uncertainty that accompanies early pregnancy than to see me be so ill and wonder what was going on. When she first found out, she wanted to know how big the baby was. I told her it was no bigger than a speck of dust. The name stuck.

I will not lie - this has not been an easy road. I've already been on bedrest once and have instructions to take it easy as much as possible. I have developed hyperemesis gravidarum, which is basically morning sickness with 'roid rage. If I'm lucky I can eat lunch. Otherwise I drink fruit juice slushes to try to stay hydrated. Everywhere I go I make sure I know where the bathroom is just in case I need to throw up. I have two medicines to take for the nausea / vomiting and they have worked just well enough to keep me out of the hospital (yay!) but not well enough to keep me from being miserable. So many people have commented to me that they are happy that I am sick and that I should be grateful.... I am, but at the same time I'm weary of feeling awful. I joked with a friend that I should shout "PRAISE JESUS!" every time I throw up.

Today was my 10 week ultrasound. (Although, I am 11-1/2 weeks now...) It was crazy. We saw the baby dancing around and sucking its thumb. After so many losses it is hard to describe the feeling when something goes right.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

It was a crazy December followed by an equally crazy January. Starting with Christmas we had two weeks of everyone being home with no work or school. I can't think of the last time that happened. It was nice.

So, here is what we've been up to:

Tim built some set pieces for our churches Christmas play - A Charlie Brown Christmas. I sewed a dozen woodstock costumes for the woodstock choir (aka all the children 6 and under.) I didn't get to see the kids in costume - I zipped them off, dropped them off and ran to my next gig. Such is December. I will try to get a picture or two from people at church because they were cute costumes and also very easy. Alice chose not to participate in the play this year. Her exact words were, "I think I'd rather do tech." She helped Tim and I behind the scenes.

Alice was over the moon on Christmas. She spent hours looking through the microscope with her new friend Julie.

In her new sweater knit by Grandma! (She loves it, Mom!)

Tim fixed a bunch of things - more record players than I can count for a local shop, a few tape decks, and my sewing machine. My machine didn't actually need fixing, but it did need to be serviced. After my horrible experience with our local Viking dealer where they said they serviced my serger (and charged me $$$$) but didn't, I had put off taking my sewing machine in. So, Tim did it for me!
Scary looking, huh?! He did a great job. He also took apart and fixed the ancient embroidery machine that we picked up from Goodwill. I appreciate how lucky I am that he can do this.

And, finally, Alice went through a rite of passage yesterday. She got her ears pierced. She has been asking TONS of questions about it in the past few weeks. Finally, after answering the same question for the 100th time, I asked if she wanted to go to the mall to just *look* at the earrings they use to pierce ears. She was excited about that but said, "I just want to look today." So we looked and she asked the ear piercer lady tons of questions. We walked around the store a little bit and I asked if she was ready to get her ears pierced. She said okay, so we went ahead and did it. She was very proud of herself.
I can't get over how old she looks!