Saturday, April 30, 2011

1 Week Old

I can't believe my Caroline is already one week old.  As I hold her I keep thinking that if things had gone as planned, she would still be in my belly.  I'm so thankful that my plan wasn't His plan for when we would welcome our sweet baby girl.  She really does complete our family!

Meeting Family and Friends

We were anxious about Elizabeth meeting her baby sister.  She loves babies, but she does not like to share (especially her mama).  She also loves having all the attention, so we didn't know how she would like sharing that attention.

When Elizabeth came to the hospital we gave her a present "from Caroline" which included a Big Sister book and a real camera that she could take pictures with.  The camera was definitely a hit and Elizabeth is still taking pictures.

When Elizabeth first came in the room she ran directly to my bedside and wanted to climb up to see the baby.  When she opened her gifts she immediately wanted to read the book to Caroline.  This really melted me.  But after about 10 minutes, she was over the baby and more interested in all the attention she was getting from Nana, Pappa, Grandma, and Aunts Hannah and Rebeka.

She had a matching Little Sister onsie to give Caroline.
I did not  get a good picture of  Hannah and Rebeka with Caroline.  I'm hoping I'll have plenty of opportunities for that this summer.  And maybe Nana can send me some that she took:))

meeting Pappa

meeting Nana

This was our Easter Sunday.

C met Mackenzie while she was getting her phototherapy for her jaundice.

meeting Auntie Melissa
Caroline and Elizabeth both got a lot of attention from Grandma this week.   She took great care of Elizabeth and fixed us all great dinners every night!  We thought about telling her she couldn't go home!!
It has been wonderful having family come to help us take care of Elizabeth so we can adjust to being a family of four and I can heal from my c-section.  We are so very blessed!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Caroline Lawson Kelly

Caroline's Birth Story:
Saturday morning started out as usual.  I woke up a little before 8:00 and enjoyed a bowl of cereal while watching preparations for the Royal Wedding on the Today show.  Bert joined me a few minutes later.  I decided to go ahead and take my shower for the day while Elizabeth was still sleeping.  We had plans to take her to the circus and I was very excited to share this experience with Elizabeth.
Well, Caroline had different plans for our day.  On the way to the shower my water broke.  I paused for a minute, called for Bert, then headed straight for the toilet where I just sat trying to process what was happening.  Never in a million years did I think Caroline would really come early, much less 3 weeks early!
The first person we called was Melissa.  I felt bad because I knew she had a busy day planned preparing for her family's Easter dinner that she was hosting.  But I also knew she would be there for us without hesitation.  And of course, she was at our house in like 15 minutes ready to take care of Elizabeth (who was just waking up without a clue how her world was about to change).  We left Melissa with very little instruction other than Bert's mom was on her way and should be there in a couple hours to take over for her.  After calling the doctor, Bert and I were off to the hospital!
We checked in, got my gown on, then learned that we would have to wait a little while for anesthesia because of the nice bowl of cereal I had consumed.  So we made phone calls and received picture updates from Melissa as to how Elizabeth's morning was going.  It was truly a relief knowing that our first baby was in good hands so we could focus on delivering baby #2. 
It was about that time that we learned that Bert's mom had gotten a flat tire driving down I-20 and wouldn't be able to make it to our house for a while longer than expected.  Thankfully, Melissa was willing to put all her plans on hold to continue taking care of E for us.
At noon the anesthesiologist came to give me an epidural.  At 12:30 they wheeled me into the OR and prepared me for surgery.  Bert held my hand as Caroline entered the world at 12:53 p.m.  I heard the doctor say, "Get ready to look up Mama".  And when I did, I saw the face of my beautiful daughter.  Then I looked at Bert whose tears matched mine, he kissed me, then escorted our youngest daughter to get cleaned up and weighed.  Even though she is technically a preemie (by one day) she earned an 8/9 on the apgar scale, weigted 7.1 pounds, and was 19.5 inches long.  She was also breached.  Can you imagine how big healthy this girl would've been had she come on time?!

meeting my baby for the first time

Caroline with her mommy and daddy

While in recovery, they measured Caoline's blood sugar and it was a bit low so she had to take some formula to help it rise.  But she wasn't a big fan of sucking that down so they had to help her with a very small tube.  Thankfully we already felt a little calmer as second time parents because neither of us freaked out over this.  I'm sure we would have with Elizabeth.  Because of her mildly low blood sugar, she didn't get to come to our room for a couple of hours.  I felt sad at first over this news, but then realized God was just giving me some extra time to rest.  When they finally brought her back to our room we held and loved on our newest addition who just so happens to look just like our first addition!

On Monday we learned that Caroline also was jaundice just like her sister had been.  She too had to go through phototherapy which means she had to lay on a bed of lights with her body in a strait jacket looking thing.  Two years ago, Elizabeth screamed bloody murder almost the entire time she was in it.  Caroline didn't make a peep.  In fact, I think she like the warmth because she slept like a baby in that thing!  She only cried when she had a poopy diaper.  This is a good thing since she was in it for over 24 hours.  Poor baby.  But as soon as we were given the okay, we got her out and made up for that time missed with extra hugs and cuddle time. 

Another precaution we have to take because of her "preemie" status is the carseat test.  We had to bring in Caroline's carseat and base which they will make her sit in for an hour and a half while they test her oxygen rates the entire time.  Apparantly preemie babies can have trouble with breathing in that position because of they're little bodies.  We're not too worried for Caroline since she is gaining weight back already and is currently 6 pounds 10 ounces- not exactly "premature weight".

On Wednesday we were released to go home.  I was anxious to say the least.  Here is Caroline ready to go home in the same gown we brought Elizabeth home in.

Here are a couple of pictures of Elizabeth just two years ago.  It felt a little like deja vu.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Preparing and Nesting (sort of)

One of my favorite features on the iphone is the "notes" app.  Since I always have my phone with me, I can instantly add something to my to-do list which allows me to not stress as much about it.  Just writing it down (or typing it in) relieves stress for me.  Unfortunately, as we get closer to Caroline's due date the number of things I add almost doubles the number I am able to take off each day.  Oh well, it still makes me feel better to have it all in one spot.  Here are some of the things I've been crossing off my list:

First off, I had a list of things to get done for Elizabeth before I could even start on Caroline.  I had a few sewing projects I started that I needed to finish so I could put everything away for a while.  I'm sure I won't be sewing for some time after C is born. 

Cross-back Jumpers with Bloomers
a contrast jumper and a knot dress
a few pairs of shorts and t-shirts

I also had to finish creating Elizabeth's second year album.  It felt really good to get that done and ordered.  With everything else on my list, I had forgotten about it when it arrived in the mail.  It was so exciting to open.  Even Elizabeth got excited this year.  She wants to read the "Elizabeth book" over and over.  She's really into seeing pictures of herself and watching video of herself right now.

I have learned something about myself in preparing for Caroline's birth.  My nesting style is to organize, not to clean.  I have been on an organization kick for a little while.  It started with my bathroom then spread to the pantry.  For some reason, these areas became very important for me to organize before we brought Caroline home.  I can't really explain it since I know Caroline will not be using either of these spaces, but somehow it just made me feel better.

Baskets for our pantry.  There's also some bins below that I organized and labeled.
our medicine

We needed more cabinet space for the bottles.  Elizabeth's cabinet is on the left and Caroline's is on the right.

the drawer

Under my bathroom sink- where it all began...

My to-do list for Caroline started with her clothes.  It was so fun going through all of Elizabeth's old clothes and figuring out which ones would work for Caroline too.  With every piece I brought out, I just couldn't believe Elizabeth had ever fit in them.  I hope it goes a little slower this time!

Next on the to-do list was setting up Caroline's furniture.  We have it all in the house, including the bedding.  Unfortunatly, we are in a fickle situation with buying our new house so I'm hesitant to set it all up in our current home.  Therefore, Caroline's room is half office and half nursery.  Because C will be in a bassinet in our room for a little while, I decided that setting up the crib wasn't necessary yet.  Therefore, we left the desk and computer in its spot so I wouldn't have to trek up and down the stairs to use it.    Bert did set up her changing table and dresser because those things would be needed for our little one as soon as we bring her home.

C's crib- still in the box

Here's what it will look like once we put it together.

And here's what her bedding will look like. I just love how sweet it is.

And finally, I have (mostly) packed our hospital bags.  This really gave me sense of relief.  Now I feel like if Caroline comes early (which I'm still praying she doesn't), then I'll be ready!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Belly Bump Comparison

In 2 1/2 weeks we will finally meet our sweet new baby girl!  I am a little stressed about getting everything on my to do list checked off before her arrival and a little anxious about caring for a very active toddler along with a newborn.  But mostly I'm excited to hold my Caroline and see her precious face.  But for now, here are some pictures of my growing belly.  And boy is it growing!  I just like to tell myself that the bigger I am, the healtheir she is!! 

Caroline at 12, 20, 24, 28, 32, and 36 weeks.

I am much bigger this time and the proof is in the pictures!  Here is Elizabeth in the first column at 25, 30, and 35 weeks and Caroline in the second column at the same week.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Another Busy Weekend

We had a packed weekend full of fun activities, especially for little Miss Elizabeth.  Saturday we went to Lea Maia's 2nd birthday party.  Elizabeth had a blast.  I can't believe I didn't get any pictures with E and Lea. 

The one thing that Elizabeth is terrified of is blow up jumpers.  She will NOT get in them, but she did stand outside of it saying, "Uh Oh, fall down" every time one of the other kids fell inside.  She was truly concerned.

As soon as they delfated the jumper, she was all about it!

She was very intrigued by this "baby" who may have been like 2 months younger than her.  But she kept saying "baby, baby play".
On Sunday morning I caught her hugging and kissing on her daddy.  Even though she has spurts of being a momma's girl, I think she will always be a true daddy's girl!  Which I love because it makes me think of how much I love my own daddy! 

Lea Maia gave these silly bands in her birthday party gift bags.  Elizabeth is already obssessed with them.

Leaving church after Palm Sunday service, E refused to let go of her branch and kept waving it.  I know she has no real clue about its meaning, but it still made my heart happy to see my baby celebrating the start of Holy Week.
 Sunday afternoon we went over to a friend's house for an Easter egg hunt.  Ellizabeth definitely better understood this year the point of an egg hunt.  She got so excited when she would see an egg, but once she picked it up she only wanted to open it to see what was inside.  She was not too worried about getting the most eggs.  But really none of the other kids were either.  They were mostly just interested in getting the prize inside.

Elizabeth loves playing with Matthew.  He is so sweet natured and they play so well together.  They were both laughing so hard while they rode on the tricycle together.  I wish I had video taped them doing this so we could hear their laughter.  It was quite contagious!