Silas: 1 month

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In many ways this first month as FLOWN by. In other ways, life with Silas just seems so normal, as if we’ve had him longer than a month.  Either way, we’re loving every bit of it, even the interrupted sleep😉. Silas has made adjusting pretty easy, and is typically pretty chill and content. He’s becoming more alert, flashing more sweet smiles, and always willing to be snuggled. 

Weight: 9.3 lbs (at 3 week appointment)

Height: 20.5 inches (at 3 week appointment)

Health:

Silas has had nothing but good reports at his doctor visits. He is a strong little guy and growing.  His umbilical cord (finally) fell off at 4 weeks. 

Eating:

He’s a great eater, typically every 3 hours during the day, and 4+ hours at night, though he’ll sometimes throw in a 2-2.5 hour feeding during the day. We have started doing one 4-5 oz. bottle feed most days, which gives me a break and allows more dad/son bonding.  He does great with the bottle and has no problem transitioning between bottle and breast. 

Sleeping:

We’re very thankful to (so far) have a good sleeper. Most days Silas sleeps 1-2 hours in between feeds, though some days recently he’s been much more awake and alert leaving only enough time for a short catnap. Mornings are usually his most alert times of the day.  We aim for a 9 pm bedtime feed so that he’s asleep for the night between 9:30 and 10. He’ll usually sleep until about 2, then up again between 6 and 7 am.  I’d be lying if I said this worked every night. Some nights include an extra feeding, and some nights Silas wants to stay awake and jabber for an extra hour after his 2 am feed. However, over the past two weeks, the majority of our nights fit under the 9,2,6 routine. 

He sleeps in a rock n play at night, and typically naps great in his mamaroo, but isn’t so fond of his crib. We’re trying to incorporate 1 nap in the crib each day to help him get used to it and hopefully make transitioning easier when the time comes.  We’ve had one very successful crib nap, a few semi-successes, and plenty of failed attempts, but we’ll keep trying. :) 

Silas also snoozes great when I’m wearing him in my Solly wrap, which works well on days he just wants to be held but I need to get things done. And I can’t say I mind having him snuggled up to me…I know these days will be gone entirely too soon.  

Likes: 

Swinging in his mamaroo, wrapped in the Solly, looking all around, being read to, walks in his stroller, outside, tummy time in small doses, being held, bath time

Dislikes:

Getting his nose sucked, more than 5 minutes of tummy time, being strapped into his car seat, but does great once he’s in and we’re driving. 

Fun things we did:

Newborn pictures, Easter church service, multiple trips to the park, stroller walks, watched a few Sporting KC soccer games with dad, donut date with aunt Katie and cousin Isaac, met great Gma & Gpa Hardenbrook

Looking forward to:

Our first road trip to OKC at the end of the month to meet uncles, aunts, and Stoltzfus cousins. 

Mom:

Physically, I’m healing very well and have been surprised at how quickly I’ve bounced back from surgery and pregnancy in general. I’ve enjoyed getting out and taking Silas on walks, and this spring weather often makes me antsy to start running again.  

Emotionally, I’m absolutely loving being mom.  I definitely have my moments when I’m exhausted, flustered, and break down in tears. I have to work through the struggle of analyzing what I ate and wondering if it’s the cause of a spittier day for my little guy, and reassuring myself that it’s normal and he’s okay.  Thomas has helped me chill out when Silas does get fussy, because again, it’s normal and he’s okay. I’m so so thankful for such a level headed husband, a partner in this parenting thing that helps me laugh and reminds me not to stress out over the little things. Every day with Silas is such a marvelous mystery, full of new developments, joys, worries, dirty moments, and moments I want to freeze and cherish forever.  Having a child has increased my desire to learn to slow down and enjoy each moment rather than wishing ahead of time. While there are so many things Thomas and I look forward to about Silas growing up and developing his own little personality, I don’t want our current days, this current stage, to be overlooked or forgotten. 

I’m still enjoying breastfeeding and so thankful that Silas does so well with it. While I do miss my nights of uninterrupted sleep, there’s something so sweet about waking up with Silas for our nighttime feed(s). The stillness, the quiet, just the two of us…his little grunts, his sleepy smiles…they’re SO worth it. Even during the day, I’ve found myself appreciating  our feeds and the way they force me to be still and take a break from any chaos or busyness in our day.  

Dad:

Thomas is such a rockstar of a dad. I can’t help but continue to brag on him.  I absolutely love watching him with Silas, and I’m extremely appreciative for all he does for both of us. If he can tell I’m getting flustered, or just need a moment to myself, he doesn’t hesitate to scoop up our sweet boy and keep him entertained.  He’s changed way more diapers than I ever expected (if you know my husband, you know how he detests bodily fluids!!) and hasn’t seemed phased by them. Overall, Thomas said it’s been easier than he thought and Silas doesn’t cry as much as he expected. He loves, and gets a kick out of, the many sounds-coos, grunts, squeals- and expressions from our animated little guy. However, he looks forward to being able to really play with our son. Like I mentioned already, he’s very level-headed, takes everything as it comes, and I couldn’t ask for a better partner/teammate. 

This month in pictures:   

    
    
    
    
    
    
   

Silas Graham

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 One week ago today, we got to finally meet, hold, kiss, and love on our sweet boy.  March 12, at 5:01 pm, our 8 lb. 20 inch Silas Graham entered the world. As I sit here trying to think what to type, I find myself speechless. No words can express the amount of love I have for my son. My heart is so full as I sit and stare at him daily.  I hope I never forget these precious days with my newborn.

Going in, I didn’t have a super specific birth plan, but knew a few things I did want. I planned to have a vaginal delivery, I knew I wanted an epidural, and I wanted skin-to-skin and to be able to nurse him ASAP.  But overall, I just wanted to meet the sweet babe and prayed he was healthy.  After about 7 hours of laboring  with strong, consistent contractions, I quit progressing at 4-4.5 cm. Silas wasn’t dropping, so my doctor said we needed to consider other options if nothing changed in the next hour.  C-section was certainly not what I had planned, but by this point, I was ready to hold my little guy. I appreciated my doctor’s approach, as he left it completely up to me, not wanting me to feel like it was something I was being forced to do.  After another hour of no progression, Thomas and I felt at peace with our decision, and preparation was soon underway for a section.  I made sure my nurse once again knew my request of skin to skin and nursing, and she was completely on board.  Again, I felt at peace with this decision.  Within 15 minutes of being in the OR, we heard our son’s first cries.  I was overwhelmed with relief knowing he was safe and healthy.  After a few minutes on the warmer, and his measurements taken, he was safe in my arms.  It wasn’t long after that, I was all cleaned up and we were back in our room nursing him.  Overall, I couldn’t ask for a better experience, despite the change in plans. 

  This week has been a wonderful, magical, tiring experience, and I wouldn’t change a thing.  Thomas has not only been the most supportive husband through it all, he’s naturally transitioned into being the best dad a boy could ask for. I absolutely love watching them interact with each other, and can’t wait to build so many memories together. 

    
  Our sweet Silas has made this transition pretty easy for us so far. He’s a good eater, good sleeper, healthy, chill little dude.  I couldn’t be more delighted to be his mama, and am grateful to God for this sweet blessing.  I might be a little biased, but he’s the most beautifully handsome babe I know.  

 

40 weeks: Due Date

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Baby D is the size of a watermelon. 

Symptoms:

Sporadic contractions, more pressure and discomfort in my pelvic area -especially after sitting a while, fatigue, and occasional tingling/slight numbness in my fingers-especially when I’m hot! Speaking of being hot, I’m definitely ready return to my “cold-natured” self. It’s so much easier to bundle up and get warm. I’m realizing how uncomfortable hot hands and feet are…and my poor students get a daily freeze-out when they come to my class since I’ve been keeping my AC cranked. (note to self: for future pregnancies, try not to be super pregnant in the summer!!!)

Exercise:

Walking, squats, jumping jacks, bouncing on my exercise ball…can you tell I’m trying to help this little mister out?! 😜

Sleep:

Still. Sleeping.  8+ hours a night…I’m in for a rude awakening and am apologizing now for and crankiness that may result from sleep deprivation.  I’ve been contemplating whether I should continue to take advantage of sleeping through the night, or start setting my alarm to wake every couple of hours to begin acclimating myself. Ha! So far, I’m still choosing sleep. 

Movement:

I’ve been feeling movements lower, but still not convinced he’s “dropped”. My stomach has been awfully lopsided with his movements lately. Now if only he’d realize how much more comfortable he (and I) could be if he’d just come enter our world.

Weekly happenings:

Grading: check! Sub plans: check! House clean: check! Bag packed: check! Ready for baby: CHECK CHECK CHECK!!!!

We had beautiful weather over the weekend, so after doing some yard work, a final “deep clean”, and making sure everything was ready to go, we enjoyed a weekend outside and time with friends. Yard games, walks, and spicy food happened multiple times, and it couldn’t have been a lovelier weekend. To top it off, it was opening weekend of soccer season, and Sporting won their first game.  We were thrilled and celebrated with homemade shortcake!!  I’ve been taking this week one day at a time, and still teaching away.  Today, my sweet students surprised me with a diaper fund and giant sign to help welcome our little guy. 

  It was the sweetest thing, and they did SUCH a good job keeping this secret for over a week.  Each day, they ask if it’s going to be my last or if they’ll get to see me at least another day, and it just warms my heart.  Friday will be my absolute last day if I make it until then…just two. more. days! Despite my sporadic contractions, I still feel great, and not like I’m 40 weeks.  I have an appointment tomorrow, so I’m excited to see how I’m progressing…or maybe he’ll just decide to come tonight. 😉 Either way, we’re beyond excited and ready to meet our son.  It still baffles me that this pregnancy is about to end and I’ll be having our baby any day now!!! Let’s do this!!

38 weeks

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Today marks week 38. 14 days seems SO much closer to me than 2 weeks. Either way, I can’t believe it’s almost time!! 

Baby D is the size of a spaghetti squash.  He’s approximately 19.5 inches and 7 pounds.

Symptoms: 

A tiny bit of occasional swelling by the end of the day, and a lot more pressure down low. Heart burn has also kicked up a notch the past few days. 

Exercise:

We did some hiking over the weekend. It felt great, but definitely wore me out. 

Sleep:

Still sleeping through the night, but feeling less and less rested in the mornings when I wake up. 

Movement:

He’s still finding some way to wiggle around in the tight space.  I’m feeling him lower, but still get some high jabs, especially when I’m sitting. 

37 week appointment recap: 

Little man and I are still healthy and doing well. He’s head down, and my doctor told me I might be 1 cm dilated…so the process slowly begins. I head back on Monday and am curious to see if/how much I’ve progressed.  

Weekly happenings:

Last Thursday was a long day with parent/teacher conferences all afternoon/evening. Thankfully it was followed by a 3-day weekend, so I took advantage of the extra day by getting a pedicure Friday and a little work around the house.  Saturday, Thomas and I decided we were up for an adventure. We wanted to take advantage of the 70 degree weather in February, breathe some fresh air, and get a little exercise.  Once we were up and about, we hopped in the car and headed to Heber Springs, just a couple hours away.  We weren’t completely sure what we’d find to do, but it turned out to be the perfect day full of tasty food, beautiful hikes, and a little nap time in our hammocks by the lake. 

      

   
  
 
On Sunday, our church threw us a shower, and we were once again blessed by the love and support shared by our church family/friends.  So far this week, I’ve been busy grading-tying to finish things up before this little guy decides to arrive.  
As my due date draws near, my excitement and anticipation to meet our son continues to grow. So far, the nerves have been kept at bay, but both Thomas’s and my patience is shrinking.  We’re ready..come on sweet boy!! 

36 Weeks

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I’m half way through week 36 of this pregnancy. We’ve been busy getting ourselves prepared for our little man’s arrival, but I am by no means counting on an early one! 

 Baby D is the size of a Papaya.  He’s approximately 19 inches and 6 lbs.

Symptoms:

Less back pain, more tired. Braxton hicks, but not very frequent or intense.

Exercise:

Thomas and I went out for a walk the other day, and between the bathroom breaks and slow pace, our distance according to my hubs was MUCH shorter than I felt like I had covered. Needless to say, my “exercise” is dwindling. However, I’m sure the amount of walking and time spent on my feet throughout the day at school can count for something, right?😉

Cravings/aversions:

Still strong on the fruit, but my sweet tooth has also managed to slowly creep back a bit lately. Really, my appetite in general has seemed to increase which I’m surprised by due to the lack of room left in my expanding midsection. My desire and energy to cook in the evenings seems to also be decreasing. I still try to plan our meals each week, but do good to actually do the cooking once or twice a week. Thankfully, I have a very gracious husband who has willingly taken over so we still get fed.:)

Sleep:

I will continue to have no complaints in this department. I can only hope that it lasts throughout the rest of my pregnancy, and maybe, just maybe, our little guy will take after us in our sleep patterns. Yet, I’ll be careful not to get my hopes up. Ha!

Movement:

The movements are getting tighter, a little more strained, but still so so fun and special to feel. Sometimes they are a bit uncomfortable, but I can’t help but smile in amazement of this little life God’s created inside of me.

Appointment recap:

I went in on Wednesday for my 36 week appointment. Things were pretty quick and easy once again, just the typical routine-weight, bp, babe’s heart rate (in the 130s), belly measure (right at 36 weeks), etc. In addition, I received my Group B Strep swab and got my TDap shot. Starting next week, my doctor will begin measuring my cervix. It’s getting more and more real!!!

Weekly happenings:

This was a full week focussed on our little man. I guess technically we should start back at last weekend as we went to a birthing class. The schedule said it was supposed to last from 8:30-2:00, so my husband wasn’t overly thrilled. However, it ended up only being 3 hours, and was full of helpful information on what to expect during labor and delivery. The information we learned helped answer many of my questions, and it put me at a bit of ease as we near the big day.

My coworkers threw me a shower on Monday and hooked us up with some more goods. (Not to leave out the ‘specialized’ fruit tray with grapefruit!!!!) I’m so grateful to have such wonderful colleagues and love the excitement they share with me.  

   
We then ordered a few other essentials to finish out our nursery, and just basic things we will want to make sure and have on hand immediately when Baby D does come. (Nursery pics will be revealed before too long!)

Tuesday evening, we went to another birthing seminar with a couple of our friends who are also expecting. There were different booths to inform us on child safety, carseat installation, diaper changing (Thomas proved to be a natural), door prizes, and a photo booth. We also got to tour the hospital and see where the delivery floor is and what the rooms look like, as well as the postpartum floor. Again, I was put at ease with this information and reassurance, and it just makes me feel all the more ready/excited to meet our little guy!! 

 As we were wrapping things up in our nursery, we decided to get a few things gathered together for the hospital bag, and my husband took the initiative to install the carseat 

Needless to say, both of us are overflowing with excitement, and like I said, we’re trying to be as prepared as possible in case we get to meet our son early, but I’m certainly not banking on it. At this point, I just don’t feel like he’s coming any time too soon.

34 weeks appointment

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Today marks 34 weeks, just 6 weeks to go. How is this even possible??

 Baby D is the size of a butternut squash.  He’s approximately 18 inches and 5 lbs.

Symptoms:

Feeling quite tired, and just in last couple days I’ve started experiencing some sciatic nerve pinching on my left side. Thankfully it hasn’t been anything too extreme or painful, but I definitely have times that aren’t overly comfortable.

Exercise:

This has slowed down a bit due to weather, lack of energy, and being busy “nesting” and getting things prepped at home and work.  However, Denise Austin and I have had a couple indoor workout dates recently.  Haha

Cravings/aversions:

All I want is fruit.  I eat grapefruit like oranges, cartons of raspberries get downed in one setting, berries in general earn their own special grocery runs.  I just can’t get enough!!

Sleep:

Still having no problem being comfortable when I sleep.  I’m out when my head hits the pillow and typically have pretty solid nights.  Most nights I get between 8-10 hours of sleep (I go to bed way early!), but still wake up so tired.  I’m beginning to accept the fact that this will be going away no time soon.

Movement:

Little man is still quite active, but I can sure tell he’s running out of room. The other day I was sitting and watching him move, and before I knew it, either his hand or foot stretched out and swiped down my stomach.  It was probably the craziest thing I’ve seen so far.

Appointment recap:

I went in today for my 34 week check up and am measuring 33.5 weeks.  Baby’s heart rate was around 127, and I’ve officially hit the 20 pound weight gain mark. I go back in two weeks, then start going weekly.  So crazy! So close!!

Weekly happenings:

A week and a half ago, I made a trip up to OKC for my first shower with friends and family.  It was such a sweet time catching up with so many college friends as well as seeing my SIL’s and aunt.  They all showered and spoiled our little guy and me with so much love, encouragement, and prayers, as well as a variety of thoughtful gifts.

  
  
   We had a few “snow days” last week, so I filled my days with reading, naps, and knocked some things off my to-do list to start getting things all ready for our little guy’s arrival.

Now that we’re back to school this week, I’ve been kicking things in high gear with sub plans for my maternity leave.  I feel like I’m making good progress, but my goodness, there’s so much to think about and get together.  I’m sure my type-A personality doesn’t help shorten the list, but hopefully it’ll all make things easier for my sub.

30 Weeks recap

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I hit the 31 week mark today..9 weeks left. Where has time gone?? I feel like this pregnancy has flown by. Over the past week, I’ve definitely started feeling more pregnant, and it’s really been hitting that our little guy will be here before we know it. Here’s a recap of the last week of my pregnancy…img_2166Baby D is the size of a cantaloupe. 

Symptoms:

Exhaustion continues to set in, which I’m sure is escalated with the fact that school started back up.  My feet are a tad sore from being on them at the end of the day, and aches result after too long of walks. As my stomach continues to stretch, my belly button continues to flatten/disappear more and more each day. 

Exercise:

I didn’t walk a lot the previous couple of weeks due to busyness at school and then holiday travels and festivities. I started back up the end of last week though, and despite being a little sore if I walk too far, it’s felt so wonderful to be moving again and get some cool, fresh air in my lungs.  

Cravings/aversions:

No aversions. Still loving citrus, particularly grapefruit and grapefruit juice!!

Sleep: 

Still sleeping great. Despite the return of my mid-night bathroom breaks, I have no complaints in the sleep department.  I’ve managed to stay comfortable and am out almost as soon as my head hits the pillow. I have had some crazy dreams lately as well, but I don’t think I’ll be sharing them. 😂

Looking forward to:

I’m now having appointments every other week, which I’m so excited about.  More chances of hearing my little guy’s heartbeat.  I also get one more ultrasound at my appointment next week, so Thomas and I are both thrilled to get one more glance before we meet our little one.  

Movement:

I still have quite the kicker in me. I’m sure his dad doesn’t mind if this is a sign of a soccer player in our future. 😉 He’s so active during the day, but thankfully seems to chill out at night, or at least enough to not interrupt my sleep.  I’m praying this is a sign of good sleep patterns once he arrives.  

Weekly happenings: 

My parents came to visit over New Year’s weekend.img_2152We had a great time playing games, visiting Memphis, and mom and I knocked out quite a few freezer meals. img_2172 I’m happy to have my freezer stocked and know we’ll still be eating good without having to do all the cooking once we become a family of 3!

School’s back in swing after a wonderful 2-week break for the holidays.  This also means that I’m down to just two more months of school, so I’m starting to sort through things to start preparing for my long-term sub.  Things are getting interesting around here!!!