One week (already)

The last week has flown by with a smattering of exhaustion, family, laundry, and overwhelming love for a very tiny guy.  Silas is a week old!

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He is doing marvelously.  Silas stays awake for a few hours at a time and is so alert!  He was a bit jaundiced, so we went to the pediatrician twice in the last week to check that.  They were pretty impressed that he had gained 7 ounces in 3 days.  What can we say, the boy likes to eat.  He is a nursing champion, although he really would like to eat every hour and just snuggle with the boobies all day long.  When I put my foot down about that, I get this face:

We have spent the days since Thanksgiving trying to get into the groove of parenthood, welcoming Sara and Derek to meet their nephew, watching our first family Notre Dame game (at least in spirit,) and decorating for the holidays.

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Sara and Derek love him, too 🙂

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He tried to stay awake… really he did.

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My favorite time of year!  Christmas music, a Frasier fir tree, decaf organic french roast, mistletoe, and knit stockings.  Ah, the simple things.

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(Who’s sleepier?  Hard to say.)

Tim fed the birds, and this is what we have to show for it:

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We got our cloth diapering system on black Friday!  Luckily, Si wanted to eat shortly after midnight, so I logged onto http://www.thegreennursery.com and ordered these guys which saved us over a hundred dollars!  We came in at well under $300 for the whole system compared to an average of about $1500 per kid to use disposable diapers.  The liners are organic cotton and the shells are darling.  I love them already!  He needs to keep eating so we can get to 8 pounds and use them!

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Tim has only asked twice to turn off the Christmas music.  Not bad…

He is back to work today for a few hours, and then off until Friday.  Baby waking means time to be done blogging!  Hope you are all enjoying the last days of November.

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(This was about an hour ago.  His cheeks are already resembling his Mama’s…)

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Happy Thanksgiving! And Introducing…

Silas Peter Thoreau Ballard born November 20th at 9:57pm
5 pounds, 2 ounces and 19 inches long
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Consensus so far is that he looks like Timmy, curly hair and all.  He is a blondie!  Tim had dark hair at birth and mine was red, so we’re attributing the hair color to Uncle Logie.

You know, at less than a week into my maternity leave and almost 2 whole weeks before my due date, I wasn’t all that worried when I awoke to contractions Tuesday morning in the wee hours.  I had some a few weeks back, and I just didn’t feel anything…indicative.  I thought I might feel weird or off kilter or like I might have a sixth sense about impending baby arrival.  There was none of that.  None!  By eight o’clock in the morning, they were 3 minutes apart but still half as short as they “should” have been for me to go to the hospital.  I called my OB and he said he’d check me even though I was a few weeks early, and I think he and I both thought I was having false labor or was in really, really early labor.  Wrong!

I’ll be honest, I didn’t believe it.  Mom got here, and I still didn’t believe it.  She said let’s go to the hospital, and still–total denial that Tuesday was the day I’d become a mommy.

After calling in the army (aka Tim at work a half hour away and my Mom slash doula 2 and a half hours away) I decided to walk our very long lane on such a beautiful day and try to get my contractions to be more consistent.  Once we realized they were not getting closer together (hanging out at almost five minutes apart) but they were getting stronger, Mom convinced me to go to the hospital.  Good thing I didn’t wait for the three-one-one rule, because that happened about fifteen minutes before I pushed.

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I went into labor wanting to do unmedicated natural childbirth and I did it.  Almost all of my labor was manageable, I thought.  I strove to get back to feeling relaxed and happy between contractions and was pretty successful with that.  I stayed really focused and I am proud of myself, even though once I got to just before pushing I was pretty sure I was going to snap.  Slash I did snap once or twice–sorry Nurse Colleen. But I did it!

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(I realize we look like modern day Adam and Eve here…  I had no clothes, but Tim did.  You just can’t see his pants.  We did immediate skin to skin contact because of the research of skin contact and the increase in development of neurological pathways, as well as a host of other benefits to baby.  Check it out!  Cool stuff.)

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We went to the hospital at three.  He was born at 9:57pm and by eleven our families were in there to meet him.  Pretty sweet.  A day before our original due date!  We were moved to postpartum at 12:30am and then we couldn’t sleep, so we stayed up all night just looking at him. He probably could have cooked a few more weeks and gained another pound, but we are home as of late last night and we are happy to have Thanksgiving with both of our parents.  I don’t even have to cook!   Pretty memorable stuff.

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We had surprise visits from Kait and Oliver, Log and Vanessa, Papaw and Kathryn, and Aubrey.  Love you all!

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 And a few more just because…

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Sorry for the picture overload!  We are pretty stoked over here…

38 weeks and counting

Hello, all! 

This week brought about the first week of maternity leave and one of the last weekends at home to get some projects wrapped up. I spent a lot of the week running errands and trying to get this kid back to a head down position after last weekend’s extensive driving to Illinois.  Turns out he isn’t a fan of head down hang outs in the car, so we’re still debating about Thanksgiving plans. 

In the mean time, I ran some errands and scored some holiday motif, including “Father Christmas” as I call him, some mistletoe, pine cones, candy canes, festive red berry garland, and a few other surprises.  I also went a little crazy on the public library online catalog and I have no fewer than seven holiday albums awaiting my pick up.  I have been loving some Dino while I waited for those to be collected on my behalf.  

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My parents came down, bless their hearts, and helped us wrap up the Fall season by tackling the bathroom ceiling texturizing, trimming out some doors and windows, and doing some important plumbing work in the loft bathroom.   Handy Dads are underrated.

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(Yes, this bathroom still needs significant work…like walls and trim…but progress!)

In other happenings, the nursery has been covered in woodwork and trim pieces all week.  It’s pretty cleared out after the productive weekend.  Here are a few new pieces, namely the darling blanket and burpies from Grammie Mary Kay that go perfectly with the nursery colors and also the little winter coat and freshly laundered baby carriers awaiting this guy. 

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Hello, 38 weeks!  I was feeling really full of baby and ready to get him out of my body last weekend, but I had craniosacral therapy this week and I have SO MUCH ROOM in there.  I think he is going to cook a few more weeks and plump up a bit. 

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We are due 2 weeks from tomorrow.  I can’t even believe it is almost December. 

 

37 weeks: Maternity Leave and a Baby Shower

I made it to maternity leave!  Woop woop!

Time has passed so quickly in some ways, and it turns out I was looking forward to the end of work so much that I forgot it directly correlated to the end of pregnancy.  Ahh!   In my head, it was like a vacation.  In reality, it’s time to bring another human into our lives.  I have had 45-50 hour weeks for more than a year, and I have to say the last few weeks with a toddler have been more challenging than I thought they’d be.  It is weird to have such a hard time sitting on the floor for tea parties, let alone getting back up with any dignity in tact.  I made it, and I am ready for a little break!  I hope I have at least a week to unwind before he makes his arrival.  Kendra tells me I will rearrange the nursery ten times and then wonder what to do with myself.  I can’t even wait to be that bored.

This weekend we went to Onarga to have a shower with Tim’s side of the family and it was wonderful!  We got so many wonderful things, especially books and gift certificates toward our cloth diaper system, as well as a ton of other darling things.  This kid is set for quite some time and he isn’t even here yet!  We are so grateful to have had two awesome baby showers.  Thank you, families!  We love you very much, and we can’t wait to introduce you to this bambino.  Here are some shots from the shower, thanks to cousin Kaitlin and her photography skills with our new camera which I shoved at her as soon as I saw her.

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The food was beautiful AND delicious, the company was sweet and generous, the venue was gorgeous, and the vintage toy motif melted my heart.  Tim even came by halfway through to open presents, which was really fun!  I look SO. PREGNANT.  Probably because I am. Three more weeks!

Thanks so much to my mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and Aunt Meg for putting it all together, and thanks to my Mom for making the drive to be there as well.  It was lovely!

Nine months

I think it’s wonderful that we get nearly a year to adjust to the idea of a baby coming.  Tim and I have both gotten suddenly and surprisingly motivated to finish projects, read books, and try to just relax and enjoy life before baby GB decides to grace us with his arrival.  Today marks the beginning of the ninth month of pregnancy.  Yowza.

This week, along with Halloween and a birthday and a baby who is finally snuggled head down in his bed-womb, we got a HUGE baby present in the form of a Nikon D3100 from my darling friend, Marina, whom I met when I lived in Hollywood and loved instantly.  Her vivacious spirit is coincidentally a generous one, and this camera is going to allow us to document this kid’s life in a way we couldn’t have done before.  We are SO. VERY. EXCITED.  I geeked out and read the manual at naptime on Wednesday, and I’ve been snapping pictures ever since while oohing and ahhing about things like “remarkable lighting without a flash” and “deft lightness in my hands” and “I can’t wait until I have something decent to capture on HD video.”  Without further adieu, here are a few projects we tackled the last half of the week:

A paper airplane mobile made of vintage comics (thanks to my brother, Logan, and his donation of a 1984 Superman and a 1982 Silver Surfer) was mocked after one that used comic book pages and a bike wheel.  At the end of the day, I wanted something red as the foundation and the bike wheel seemed so heavy to hang above a child’s face, so I went with embroidery hoops.  This entire project ran me under $7, thanks to the free comic books.  Log tells me I could get some back issues for a few dollars, if you’re interested.

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Also, get a load of the finally hung nursery art!

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Sadly, while I slumbered (before 8pm, but who’s asking?) the ever tempestuous kitten, Francie, decided the paper airplanes were probably intended for her.  At about three thirty this morning, when Tim had a headache and I had gotten up for the third time, he broke the news that the mobile was looking a little shaky while Francie snuggled with my belly like she does every night, looking as innocent as possible.  In my comic book airplane induced panic, I forgot to capture the pathetic state of the mobile, but rest assured (with the exception of one airplane,) I restored it to nearly perfect condition.  And then I promptly hid it under a baby blanket so the poor kid can at least look at it one time before this happens again.

Since we have been up since four a.m., we have been terribly motivated.  Tim and I decided to unfloor, re-floor, patch, and paint the laundry closet that resides in our bedroom.  It doesn’t look all that impressive, but just know that before this point, it was a sad combination of floral wallpaper, gray painted floral wallpaper, unpainted drywall with holes in it, and raw plywood shelving.  Ta da!  I feel so much better.  I don’t know why we didn’t do this months ago.  Oh wait–yes, I do.  We didn’t have walls or a kitchen or a functioning shower.  We also finished out the second nursery closet with caulk and paint and trim, and Tim is closing off the eaves in the kitchen between the beams while he watches Notre Dame from a ladder.  This guy is committed!  Life is really coming together out here in the woods.

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Speaking of woods, it is looking very wintery and yucky today.  It has been sleeting and raining, and the view from our living room looks a little something like this:

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It is November, and I am so happy that people are going to stop giving me grief about my holiday tunes.  I am going to do a little more Fall decorating today just because I can, and I bought a handful of holiday decor items this week that I am going to begrudgingly store until after Thanksgiving, per Tim’s final tone of voice about Christmas decorations at the beginning of November.  Sigh.

Winter in the woods is on it’s way!  The nursery is ready and my last week of work is only three days long at the end of the week.  I can’t believe it’s maternity leave time!

Who’s got a fun Fall project?  Or winter one?  Methinks it’s time for a Pinterest project since I happen to be off until Wednesday…