Tuesday, December 6, 2011


     Time to play a little blog catch up.  Halloween was fast approaching and with no money in the budget for costumes, I was anxiously trying to figure out what to do.  Isn't it against some American code of parenthood to not dress your child up for their first Halloween?  So my first idea was we could dress Harmony up as a fairy.  I already had a tutu and I read up on how to create wings out of hangers and nylons.  But laying on wire wings didn't sound too comfortable or realistic for holding a 2 1/2 month old so I kept looking.  I came across a blog where the parents had dressed up in all black and wore an "Incredibles-esque" mask to be bank robbers.  They bought this costume for their infant:
It runs between $25 and $30 online.  I saw it and thought, "I can make that!"  So I did.  I had some scrap fabric that I cut up and sewed into a wearable bag with a simple velcro closure in the back.  I found a hat the same color that is a 12-month size so my friend Tia took over with attaching money to it and we placed it on Harmony's head backwards so it could hang down her back rather than fall over her face.  Here's my finished product: 

     Not bad for only spending $1.79 on fake money! 

     I then cut up masks from some black fabric I had, attached some elastic, and Jackson and I were ready for the Ward Trunk or Treat!  Unfortunately only one of the 2 masks were really wearable (it's a lot harder than it looks to cut eyes and nose holes in the correct place and the correct size!) so Jackson took one for the team and let me wear the mask (I may or may not have whined and got a little stressed after frantically trying to make them the day of!) We went to the trunk or treat, I ate way too much mediocre chili, sneaked a few pieces of candy corn and enjoyed celebrating Halloween with friends and family! 

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Getting to know Harmony

     Harmony is now 3 months old and I thought I'd tell you a little bit about her personality and my adjustment to motherhood.  First I'd like to say that being a mother is AMAZING.

 Everyone always talks about how having kids is so life changing and how the love of a mother and father for their children is limitless.  It's something that is definitely impossible to comprehend fully until you get there yourself. I actually suffered from irrational fears while pregnant like, "What if I don't love my baby?"  (I obviously didn't experience a ton of bonding while prego) or "What if I find my baby annoying?"  or "What if motherhood isn't as fulfilling as I expect it to be?"  ...  I look back and laugh at those fears.  I was absolutely in love with my baby as soon as she took her first breath and that love grows exponentially every day.  She is not annoying, but is such a joy to be around.  And motherhood is rewarding and fulfilling in a way that  I didn't expect - definitely more emotional fulfillment than I ever dreamed (so grateful that I didn't have any post partum depression - my hormones have felt more stable post-birth than they have in years!) and it's physically fulfilling - I am amazed that my body grew this little human being inside and was strong enough to carry her, deliver her, and then pop back into a relatively normal state (minus a strong core and plus 10 lbs).
     Harmony has brought more joy into our home than I ever dreamed possible.  We can't stop staring at her and I am convinced there is nothing better than her many toothless grins.  Speaking of grins, let's start there with getting to know her.

1.  SMILES.  Harmony is one happy baby!  She loves to smile.  She began smiling consistently at about 4 weeks.  Her smiles make me laugh and smile all day long and that first smile of the day, when she's crying in her crib after waking up but smiles as soon as she sees me makes getting out of bed so worth it!

2.  LEARNING.  Harmony loves to study and try to imitate what we teach her.  For example, she has figured out the long O sound.  She studied our mouth, tried it out with her voice and got the hang of it.  However, when we demonstrate the short 'a' sound, she studies our mouth but doesn't attempt any sound because she hasn't figured out how to form her mouth and tongue.  She tries to imitate various other actions as well, it's a blast to see her small successes in copying us.  She also rolled over from her stomach to her back on her one month birthday but has no clue how she did it.  About 3 weeks ago she rolled over from her back to her stomach for the first time, here's the aftershot:

3.  SLEEPING.  We are so blessed!  Harmony had her days and nights figured out on day one.  The first two weeks I fed on demand so I was up every couple of hours.  But then, I started to try to get her on a schedule and it only took a few days before I had her only waking up at 2 and 6 to eat (I feed her for the last time at 9 pm which means she's usually down by 10:30 if not sooner).  And, for about the last month she has consistently only woken up at around 5:30 to eat.  I'm so glad!

Also, the first 6 to 8 weeks of her life she really didn't sleep during the day except for when we were in the car.  This meant that my days were filled with almost constant bouncing and walking to keep her happy because she hated to not be held.  However, she is finally taking short naps, yesterday she took two 20 minute naps which is a huge deal!

Rocking Harmony to sleep for a nap

4.  PLAYING.  As Harmony has adjusted to life outside the womb she has become more secure and content.  She is a ton of fun to play with and is so responsive.  She gets a kick out of the toys hanging on her car seat and many times she wakes up in the morning and is entertained by her mobile for a bit which gives me a few more minutes of sleep.  She loves when I brush my hair across her cheek, when Jackson gets her legs moving really fast like she's on a bicycle, and when we just coo and make funny sounds.  Most recently she loves to watch me count to 5 on my fingers.  I can also leave her in the swing or on a blanket for longer and longer periods of time and she entertains herself which lets me get the dishes done and cook dinner.

5.  THE BINKIE.  For about 6 weeks Harmony would not take the binkie.  That was rough.  This meant mom was a human pacifier and as a new mom it took a bit to figure out when she was hungry or just wanting to suck for soothing.  Even after I figured it out, sometimes it was easier to just be the pacifier in order to stop the crying.  But, now she takes it and my life is changed.  It helps her go down for naps, it helps soothe her while awake...  I love it!

6.  MOM HAS FINALLY FIGURED IT OUT!  Harmony has been a much happier baby since I learned what her different cries mean and learned different ways to keep her happy.  Now I can tell when she's  crying because she's tired or the hunger cry or the "I'm bored laying here" cry.  I can address the correct need and life is so much easier!   Harmony rarely cries inconsolably any more (I really don't remember the last time that happened!).  She is so happy and easy to please.  I love it!  A friend of mine told me it gets much easier after the first two months and she was right.  I wondered how on earth I could handle more kids and went through the crazy emotions and frustrations that come with fussy babies (which now I know her fussiness was nothing compared to what some of my friends have gone through) and the difficulty of feeling like I sat on the couch nursing 24/7 each day.  But I learned a ton and her eating patterns calmed down and she stopped fussing and now life is peachy!  I'm so excited to watch her continue learning and growing!

We have had an amazing 3 months learning how to take care of our daughter.  We love her so much and she is a beautiful, happy baby girl!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


     Jackson and I splurged when BYU came to Austin to play UT and bought a couple of tickets off of craigslist.  We figured we had many reasons to celebrate - our one year anniversary (which was Aug 14th - the day i checked in to the hospital so we never really got to celebrate), the birth of our first child, our move to a 2 bedroom apt ( which took place the same day as the game, so that was a bit chaotic!), and as Jackson said "you're a BYU alumni and I'm a dropout"...  like I said, many reasons to celebrate and justify the purchase! So, my brother who had come up to help with the move was nice enough to babysit Harmony for us and Jackson and I went to the game with Kendall (Jackson's step-dad) and a couple of friends.
      When we arrived, parking was a bit more difficult to find than we anticipated since UT is downtown so we ended up a ways away and were missing the beginning of the game.  Lucky for us their are  some hip Austinites who run game day bike taxis as a side job.  Our biker was super chill and happy to let the 3 of us pile in the cart and pull about 570 lbs. to the stadium.  I had to sit on Jackson's lap and having recently gave birth I tried not to feel too fragile or anxious about what would happen to me if we crashed (crashes have happened - we asked).
On the bike taxi

Bike taxis from behind
We made our entrance into the Stadium with Jackson shouting a BYU cheer.  He kept shouting through the whole game.  He was a very annoying visiting team fan, I'm sure. But, UT fans were extremely nice!  We had heard stories about this being true and experienced it first hand.  Everyone was congratulating us on a good game afterwards (granted, they won so that of course helped them be happy and I'm sure kinder) but still, we were very impressed, especially with the fans who were around us and never took our shouting personally.  Here we are at the game: 

     We had a lot of fun and even got to meet up with an old friend of mine from BYU.  Adam and his wife came over to our seats at half time and said hello and that was lots of fun since Adam and I have been friends for 6 years.  I really love meeting up with BYU friends throughout the country.  

     So, even though we lost it was still an awesome game and a fun date night.  Can't wait to take Jackson to a home game one day!  

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Harmony's Birth!

Harmony Melody Calame
Born:  15 August 2011 at 1:33 PM
8.67 lbs 20.5 inches

     By Sunday the 14th the baby still hadn't come.  We were scheduled to check in to the hospital at 5:00 pm to start the inducement process.  We arrived half an hour late at 5:30 p.m.  The nurses went through asking all sorts of questions – the typical medical history, allergies, etc.  They tried starting the IV and got it in the vein no problem but the catheter bent and wouldn’t go in correctly.  I squeezed Jackson’s hand a good one as the nurse moved the needle and catheter around for what seemed like forever.   Then she said she was going to stop torturing me and put it in my hand instead.   Thank-you.

      Once all the checking in and setting up was complete, they put the first cervadil pill in me.  I was still only dilated to 1 ½ and only 50% effaced.  I took a sleeping pill and slept soundly through the night.  They put the pill in every 4 hours through the night so by 7:30 a.m. on the 15th it was time for the 4th one.  But, Dr. Thoppil went ahead and ordered that they start the pitocin even though I was only at a 2 and 70% effaced.  The first hour was full of cramping and towards the end I was having to concentate on breathing through them.  I suggested we put on Netflix to help distract me so we started watching Bella.  I’ve been wanting Jackson to see it for a long time.  But, about half way through the movie, by 9:30 AM the contractions were getting pretty strong and I needed to concentrate completely on getting through them.  We turned the movie off and Jackson stood by my bedside as I gripped his hand for each one.  I started writhing, moaning, and whimpering through them as time went on and kind of felt like crying but didn’t.  
     My family showed up at 10:30 AM as contractions were getting really intense.  My parents, Dathan, and Shalynna all walked in at once.  There’s a 2 person limit in the delivery room and they’re not super strict about it or anything but I felt super overwhelmed with all these smiling happy people walking into my room nonchalantly as I was writhing in pain and going through this super intense experience.  Jackson quickly fixed the situation and my family took turns visiting.  They were just giving me pain medication through my IV when they arrived.  They gave me some through my IV that was going to take effect quickly and then a shot in my butt that was supposed to last longer.  I have been terrified about all the needles involved in childbirth and haven’t been stuck anywhere but my arm since I was very very little (so little that I have no recollection of ever being stuck anywhere else).  Anyway, funny enough the spot where they put the needle was on my butt but towards my hip and in a spot where I am very ticklish.  So rather than hurting, it actually tickled as the shot went in!  I found that humorous and shared the laugh with my mom and Jackson in between contractions.  The pain medication did help, although I was definitely still in a lot of pain during contractions.  It really helped me relax in between though along with making me woozy and tired.  I had barely acknowledged anyone since the contractions had gotten strong and that continued.  I had to keep my eyes closed because the light made me dizzy and I discovered very fast that noise really annoyed me.  I made everyone talk quietly and if anyone tried to address me I had no idea because I couldn’t hear anything over my breathing and I was completely consumed in working through contractions.  Jackson was great at holding my hand and being a comfort at my side even though I hardly interacted with him during this time other than to squeeze his hand really hard.  
My husband is dang hott.  And my miserable face peeking out from the corner makes me laugh.
Looking back I’m kind of surprised at how independently I handled it.  Don’t get me wrong, Jackson HAD to be there and I couldn’t have done it without him but I’m surprised at how fully focused I was on me and my body and not on anyone or anything else. 
     So anyway, at this point I was thinking I could never do this again, and wondered how I was ever going to have another child.  They had wanted to give me IV pain meds before the epidural because I was only dilated to a 3 and the epidural can really slow down labor so Dr. Thoppil ordered they hold off.  Periodically the nurses asked me what my pain was on a scale of 1 to 10 and I only ever got up to saying a 5 because I figured it was going to get a lot worse.  I was convinced I just had to be a wuss because I expected labor to go on for another 5 to 8 hours and knew that was a lot of time for things to get worse.  At noon they called the anesthesiologist and started preparing for the epidural.  In between intense contractions we got me sitting up, cross legged, hugging a pillow, and leaning forward arching my back as Jackson held onto my shoulders.  The anesthesiologist gave me my 3 options, 1 – he could give me a basic run down of the epidural and explain the drug, potential risks, expected outcomes, etc.  2 – he could just answer my questions.  Or 3 – he could just go for it and get it in.  I of course went for option 3.  I have always been terrified of an epidural, an apparently large needle going straight into my back has never seemed like a cake walk.  However, anything sounded better than those contractions.  He numbed me first and said the needle would feel like a bee sting.  It did sting but not nearly as bad as I had expected.  Then, I didn’t even feel the actual epidural.  The anesthesiologist did his job flawlessly and the epidural was administered at 12:30 pm.  Within ten minutes I was feeling substantially better.  But as soon as it took away the pain I felt really intense pressure.  I had been told they would check me again in 15-20 minutes and was trying to be patient but I was having to work just as hard through contractions to not push as I was earlier to bear the pain.  I was concentrating on my breathing, squeezing the bar on the bed, and unable to talk through the contractions because the pressure was so intense.  I kept assuring my mom that it didn’t hurt it was just a TON of pressure.  Right after the epidural kicked in Jackson went to get something to eat, he hadn’t eaten all day.  As he was gone the urge to push intensified.  Finally, I called the nurse in.  I didn’t want to seem like an idiot thinking I was ready to push when I still had another 5 centimeters to go or something but I couldn’t deny what I was feeling and what my body was trying to do either.  And I had to know because I knew I couldn’t push until I was a 10 and I couldn’t hold it back any longer.  She seemed a bit skeptical but went ahead and checked me and got this cute smile on her face and said I was there.  I was a 10 and 100% effaced.  I could push! 
     Suddenly the room jumped into action.  The nurse wanted me to labor down some more because the baby wasn’t quite as low as they would of liked.  I tried my best to not push but it was next to impossible.  I frantically had my mom call Jackson to get him back in the room.  Dr. Thoppil arrived shortly after Jackson, they had both been in the cafeteria.  Nurses filed in, everyone got gloves on and delivery gear in order.  They took apart the bed without me even knowing it, got my legs straddled in the air and with each contraction I was finally allowed to push.  The nurse and Dr. Thoppil were great at coaching me through and Jackson was fantastic at encouraging me and re-enforcing what they were telling me to do.  I couldn’t believe how fast it was all happening.  As the baby descended everyone told me I was doing fantastic, they could see the baby’s head and I was making great progress.  I wanted to see.  I requested a mirror.  They brought one in but after watching for a bit I had to look away because the hole I saw still seemed far too small to push a baby out of and it was kind of freaking me out.  After about 30 minutes of pushing, the baby came out.  It was a crazy feeling.  I felt the stretching and pressure that I had always been so terrified of.  Even with the epidural it stung some but there was such purpose and I knew I was so close.  The baby slid out and there was such a release of pressure!  Jackson cut the cord and the baby was immediately placed on my chest.  I was overcome with endorphins.  I was full of so much joy and love for this little baby on my chest. 

Apparently as Jackson cut the cord Dr. Thoppil asked him, “So, what are you going to name him?”  Jackson looked down at the baby’s face, up at the board where the names “Emerson” and “Donnovan” were written, which were the two names we were deciding between, and looked back at the baby and said, “I have no idea”.  Neither of those seemed right to him.  I missed this conversation as I regained coherency.  But, this cheesy baby was placed on my chest and I cried a little bit and kissed the baby’s forehead and said hello and then I looked up and my first words were, “So, is it a boy for sure?”  The baby had been born for at least 3 minutes at this point.  The nurse pulled back the blanket the baby had been wrapped in, and as we both looked the nurses eyes widened and said, “Nope!”  We had a little girl!  Jackson and I started laughing and were shocked but not that shocked because we had felt very strongly at the very beginning that we were going to have a girl, that our little Harmony Melody was waiting to join our family, but 2 separate ultrasounds had convinced us otherwise.  Jackson said, “Well then, her name is Harmony!”  a name we had picked out for our first daughter before we were even married. 
     I was overjoyed as I held her in my arms and spent the next half hour trying to get her to latch on and start nursing.  That was a little tricky to get the hang of and the nurses were really good about staying with me and helping.  We finally got her to nurse for a few minutes and then they took her across the room to bathe her, do footprints, measurements, etc.  

Family filed in and met her and about 2 hours after her birth I was wheeled to a recovery room where I would be staying for the next 48 hours.  I was STARVING so my family left on a mission to Sonic to bring me back a bacon cheeseburger, fries, and a strawberry-banana-pineapple milkshake. 

I snarfed it down and then ordered dinner from room service and ate that an hour or two later. 
     Right after the delivery I told Jackson, “I could totally do that again!”  The whole childbirth process was so much easier than I ever expected it would be.  I had a 1st degree tear which meant it was very small and only required a couple of stitches.  My recovery was super easy, I felt fantastic.  Even in the days following.  Sore of course, but nothing terrible.  I created a reputation with the nurses as being the happiest and easiest patient they had.  It felt amazing to have my body back. 
 It was such a beautiful experience and happened so fast - 6 hours from when they started the pitocin to when I had Harmony in my arms.  When we were checking out with the hospital, our nurse told us, "I've seen some great parents come through here, but you two have really got it together".  She was so impressed at our team work and love and stability, even as 23 and 24 year old parents.  We were flattered and are trying our hardest to continue "keeping it together".  We love each other and we love our daughter.  Hooray for becoming a family of 3! 

Friday, September 16, 2011

Day 8 of Overtime

     Sunday August 14 was the day set for me to check in to the hospital to begin the process of inducement.  It was also our one year anniversary!  We slept in, trying to get a good amount of rest before embarking on childbirth, then I worked on the diaper bag I've been sewing and then cooked a delicious dinner of baked halibut, rice, and vegetables.

This dinner completed my one year challenge to cook a new meal every day for a year!  It was a fun year and I'm so much in the habit of finding new meals for the week's menu that I can't seem to stop.  I'll just keep on going! 

     We packed our bags and anxiously went to the hospital.  We checked in 30 minutes late and got settled.  Read about the birth story in the next post! 

Day 7 of Overtime

      At one week overdue we spent the day swimming.  On Fort Sam.  Which meant swimming for free.  With 2 awesome water slides.  Jackson talked the lifeguard into letting me go down the slower of the two (which ended up still being pretty fast!) and I was like a giddy school girl.  I LOVE water slides and going down that slide at 41 weeks pregnant was the most fun I had had all Summer!

    After swimming we went home and got ready for a friend's wedding reception. My best friend, Rebecca, had returned from her mission the night before and I anxiously awaited her arrival to the reception.  It was a joyous reunion And Maria, Rebecca, and I enjoyed the time together.  We've been friends for over 10 years and I had no idea when we would all 3 be in the same place at the same time again until Maria's sister planned her wedding in San Antonio on the perfect weekend.  I had hoped they would get to meet my baby too but, I'll take what I can get.  

Baby bump picture!  I believe Maria was 13 weeks at this point and I was 41. 
What a great weekend filled with friends and family but still no baby!  We drove back to Austin and waited some more with no signs of labor.

Day 6 of Overtime

I'm going to catch up here briefly.  So, back to Day 6 of Overtime: 

I had no signs of labor and there were lots of exciting events going on back in San Antonio - my sister-in-law was going through the temple for the first time, one of my best friends was going to be in town for her sister's wedding, and another best friend was coming home from her mission.  I figured we might as well go down to San Antonio and enjoy the weekend while waiting for the baby, if I did go into labor it would be a little over an hour and a half to the hospital back in Austin.  Doable.

So, while Jackson was at work, I readied everything for the trip.  We loaded up the hospital bag and car seat, just in case, and headed down to San Antonio.  Jackson had been working his tail off and getting hardly any sleep for the previous few weeks and so the 9 month pregnant woman was the driver:

Notice:  9 month pregnant woman driving, husband curled up with the pregnancy pillow and feet on the dash.  Awesome.  

Don't worry, I was more concerned about his health and the need for sleep than I was about driving 100 miles.  

     We were able to attend the temple session with Veronica and it was wonderful.  I even ran into Maria (the best friend in town for wedding) and her family as I entered the temple.  I'm so happy we were able to share in Veronica's special night and it was fun to go out to eat after and chat with friends and family into the late hours of the night.  We ended the night by staying at a friend's house and crawling into the amazingly soft bed in their guest bedroom.  That bed is so incredible that we pass up staying with 3 different options of households with family members when we visit San Antonio.  Our friends Brit and Rick who provide the bed and consistently delicious breakfasts are pretty awesome too!

With Veronica after the session 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Day 5 of Overtime

Thursday:  Still waiting.  Weird that if I hadn't of canceled we would have a 1 day old baby right now.  I spent the first part of my day showering and getting ready, including shaving my legs.  It was SO HARD!  Definitely a painful and uncomfortable experience to lean over my belly.  I had vowed I wouldn't shave my legs again until the baby came but I had dark prickly hairs on my fat ankles and I just couldn't stand it.  So, I shaved my legs.  Then I actually put on real clothes (I've been living in Jackson's t-shirts and basketball shorts) and did my hair.  One reason I probably felt so bad yesterday is because I needed a shower, I didn't really get dressed, do my hair, or make up.  So I felt pretty gross to begin with.  Today I put in the contacts, did the make-up, straightened my hair and even wore earrings.  I know.  Over the top.
     Anyway, the point of today is that I had my dr's appointment.  We discussed options and my preferences.  I'm grateful that my doctor doesn't try to push anything on me.   If it were his wife, he would have gone through with the inducement on Wednesday, but he's respectful of my decision.  Anyway, he said the baby is getting pretty big in there.  He's at least 8 pounds by now.  This of course is only by an external exam though, no ultrasound data to back it up.  But, we discussed the risks of waiting longer compared to inducing, etc.  I know 2 weeks is pretty much the cut off point these days, and I don't actually feel comfortable waiting that long anyway because the risks are substantially higher.  Anyway, moral of the story is that if the baby still hasn't come, I check in on Sunday night and get induced on Monday.  The baby will be 9 days overdue by then.
     I feel really good about the new plan.  Even if I do end up getting induced, I'm glad that I gave my body and the baby some more time and I feel like it's a happy medium between the potential risks of both  scenarios.  I also feel like I'm following my instinct and my body and that of course makes me happy and confident in my decision.
     I did make a little progress though.  I was dilated to 1.5 centimeters today.  I know, nothing substantial, but at the same time I've been at a 1 for like 3 weeks so I'm happy to see a change.
     I ended the day with going out with Jackson and our good friends Donny and Aleksandra.
 I haven't been out in AGES.  We've lived in the live music capital of the world for a year and tonight we finally went to our first live music venue.  Don't judge.  We went to Darwin's Pub on 6th street and I met Matt Noveskey from the band Blue October.  That was cool!
  And we got to listen to some mad guitar skills from a local band.  As I sat there at the booth, enjoying being out on the town, I turned to Jackson and said, "I'm 5 days overdue... in a bar".  Our friend Donny then referenced one of my very favorite movies which made my night.  I was happy to complete the quote as he had left off the best part at the end -

Baby In A Bar


Day 4 of Overtime

Wednesday:  My high spirits were on vacation today.  I didn't get as much sleep as I would have liked and I was just overall in a blah mood.  I couldn't bring myself to clean so I spent the day fiddling around and cutting out fabric pieces for my diaper bag.  I'm so glad my back doesn't yell at me anymore when I'm up and down on the floor!  Our friends Donny and Aleksandra invited us over for dinner so I met up with Jackson at their house.  Aleksandra is from Poland and made a delicious meal that I can't pronounce let alone spell, but it was full of all kinds of meat and sausage and sauerkraut.  I was a huge fan.  Old wive's tale to bring on labor for today:  eat spicy food.  Done.
     After dinner I was feeling especially emotional and wasn't sure why.  Jackson took me into a different room and cuddled me on the couch and got me talking the way he is so good at doing.  Once I started talking I realized that I had talked to like 20 people that day who all asked the same questions - "When's that baby going to come?  What's your plan for housing?  Are you buying the house you've been looking at?  Are you staying in your apartment?  Are you staying in the ward?  Will you have family stay with you after the baby comes? " etc.  I had no answers for any of it.  I just said "I don't know" over and over and over and over and over.  That for some reason takes it's toll on you.  Especially when I am a planner.  It doesn't matter if my plans come to pass or change every day, I just need to have one.  So anyway, Jackson worked his magic and got me feeling much better and resolved some concerns about our plans.  I went home and spent the rest of the evening content to sew my diaper bag.  It's going to be super cute.

Day 3 of Overtime

     Tuesday:  Made it through another night.  On day 3 the soreness from jogging was gone so I was back to my old pregnant self.  Or my new pregnant self rather.  Because my old pregnant self was miserable with intense back pain and an inability to get comfortable.  But, for the last 2 weeks I have felt better than I have in months!  Seriously, I've been feeling amazing.  My back pain suddenly decided to go away on my last day of work.  I can't blame work because I had back pain for 4 months before I even started work, but for some odd reason my back has felt amazing and my energy has returned.  This makes waiting for the baby so much easier!
     Day 3 consisted of more chores and then lots of errands.  I ordered fabric online to make a diaper bag and car seat canopy and it came in the mail today so I happily went off to the fabric store to buy other supplies.  After perusing fabric stores for zippers, snaps, iron on vinyl, interfacing, thread, elastic, and velcro I went on my merry way to buy groceries.  We ended the evening going out to eat with a bunch of friends at Double Daves which is a weekly tradition since their pizza rolls are only 75 cents on Tuesday nights.  In between assuring people that no their eyes are not deceiving them, I am still pregnant and no I don't plan on being pregnant forever, I enjoyed my greasy pizza and happily took myself on home.  

Day 2 of Overtime

     Monday:  Jogging Sunday night was a terrible idea! I was so sore the next day with some intense pelvic pressure and soreness. I spent much of my day on the phone with various people and going back and forth about being induced on Wednesday.  After debating and examining my own personal feelings I decided to go ahead and cancel my inducement date.  I'm nowhere near in agreement with the opinionated doula that offered her advice and caution against inducement, but I do know that I felt more comfortable giving the baby some more time to come on his own.  I figure going into labor naturally is an obvious preference to forcing my body and the baby into it before they are good and ready.  Besides, I like the element of surprise.  It's weird to me to schedule the birth of my baby.  Also, I would prefer to not have that medical of an experience.  So, I canceled and made an appointment to see my doctor on Thursday for a routine weekly check-up.
   Then, I tried the next labor-inducing old wive's tale: pressure points and essential oils. A lady in my ward is a massage therapist and offered her services. I went over to her house and she ended up working on my legs and feet for almost 2 1/2 hours! She was such a doll, and made it her personal challenge to reduce the swelling. She did fabulous. Didn't get rid of it by any means but my feet and legs were smaller than they've been in a VERY long time. And it felt so good! She sent me home with a mix of oils to rub on my belly and lemon to put in my water.  Labor still didn't come but I won't complain about that intensely long massage!
     I went home and made a blueberry buckle cake really fast for an FHE treat.  We had a group FHE at a friend's house and the cake was a huge hit.  I highly suggest trying it.  Follow the link to the recipe and add about 1/3 cup uncooked oatmeal to the topping.  Delicious!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Day 1 of Overtime

     The baby's due date came and went yesterday.  Today I attended all 3 hours of church and women everywhere were offering suggestions of how to induce labor naturally.  I of course have already done ample research on the matter in the weeks leading up to this point but it was fun to hear individual success stories.  Here's the plan if the baby doesn't come:  I check into the hospital Tuesday night.  Since I am not in a "favorable condition" for inducement (meaning I'm not sufficiently dilated and effaced ) they will give me a pill to start contractions.  By morning the contractions should have done their job and I should be sufficiently dilated to start the pitocin and induce labor.  The baby will come one way or another on Wednesday.  I am not exactly thrilled with the idea of being induced but I also don't want to wait and have him come that close to our anniversary on the 14th.  Call me selfish but I need my child's birthday to be sufficiently separated from my anniversary so as to be able to celebrate both separately.  So, inducement it is.  He'll be 4 days overdue anyway and my doctor fully supports the idea.  Anyway, regardless, bringing on labor naturally is still the preferred method.
     So, I made a new friend in the ward who just moved in and is due with her 2nd at the end of September.  She said with her first, she went for a jog with her husband when she was one day overdue and her water broke an hour later.  I spent the day getting pumped up about the idea and figured it was worth a try.  So, tonight I pulled out the biggest shoes I own and Jackson stuffed my feet into them for me.

     I was extremely giggly as we prepared for our jog.  Fully inspired and full of energy because of this video:  

  Unfortunately I am not blessed with such awesome dance moves so I'll start with jogging.  

     We proceeded to go jogging around our apartment complex with walking in between.  It went amazingly well even though my legs felt like they were full of lead and my feet had no support and were overflowing my shoes.  It was a fun experience even if it doesn't bring on labor.  Although now I can't complain about the resulting pelvic pressure and soreness! 
     Tomorrow a woman in my ward who is a massage therapist is going to try some pressure points.  After that, my relief society president has offered the trampoline in her backyard.  She said it worked for her once!  I'm just having fun with it at this point.  I have nothing better to do and I get some good laughs out of it.  And hey, if something works, then great! 

Friday, August 5, 2011

Breaking, Ripping, and Fixing

     As part of this nesting phase I'm in, besides cleaning more than I have in a very long time with a much better attitude about it, I have also been getting some sewing done that has been needed for a while.  Once upon a time I washed our amazingly soft 500 thread count sheets and made the mistake of putting the fitted sheet in wrapped around the base of the washer.  It apparently didn't go over too well with the agitator and our beautiful sheet came out like this:

     Complete with the mummy and all.  I was very sad about it and I finally sat down to fix it this week.  A hole that size with so many frayed threads was a bit harder to fix than I expected but better than paying for new sheets at this point.  I sewed the softest cotton I could find on each side of the sheet and ironed on wonder under in between the layers in the hopes that the adhesive secures all of the separated threads and helps it to stop from fraying and separating even more.  Here's the obnoxiously LARGE patch! 

We'll see how it holds up after I wash it! 
     Also, a couple of days ago through a series of unfortunate events I managed to drop one of our plates.  It shattered in pieces on the floor and I burst into tears.  It was our first broken dish and I'm in love with our dish set and was heart broken.  Jackson once again reminded me that it's no use crying over spilled milk and I dried my tears and tried to mend my heart.  P.S.  the plate was covered in bacon grease so I ended up with baking soda all over the kitchen floor AGAIN.  :) Anyway, today I stopped by Bed Bath and Beyond to see what kind of warranty we might have on the dishes.  They kindly informed me that they have a very open return policy and I can just bring the plate in and they would replace it for free.  I looked at the worker incredulously and re-emphasized the fact that I had dropped the plate on the floor, that it was my fault.  He said it was no problem.  It's a lifetime open return policy.  (Isn't that AMAZING?!  Any dish we break in the future will be replaced at no extra cost!)  So, I went out to my car and brought in the biggest shard of the plate identifying the make and model and within minutes had a brand new plate in my hands.  No paperwork, no purchase verification, no cashier transaction.  Just take the plate and walk out.  Thank-you Bed Bath and Beyond, as if we didn't love you before.  
Jackson with our newly replaced plate!

     My other big accomplishment this week was sewing a pillow case.  I know, a pillow case is probably the easiest thing in the world to sew but I'm still excited about it.  You see, my younger sister gifted me a memory foam body pillow a while back in the hopes that it would help me sleep better with my growing belly.  It's abnormally sized, long and skinny so even normal body pillow cases would be too large.  I measured it, cut, and sewed.  Then I seam ripped because there wasn't quite enough room to get the pillow in and re-sewed with a smaller seam allowance.  And here's our wonderful pillow nicely covered and protected: 

 I am especially pleased with how the hem turned out, it looks so professional! 

     It feels nice to clean and sew again and to not have to pay for it in the form of excruciating back pain. This ease of pregnancy symptoms (except for the swelling which never gives me a break!) has made this last week of pregnancy so much easier.  Before, I was so anxious to get this baby out of me but this week I have been much more content to wait.  Although, now that he is due tomorrow I am anxious again!  I'm pumped up for labor and currently have a "Bring it on!" attitude so it would be nice if he came, I dunno, like tonight?  Please, please, please don't make me wait until Wednesday to be induced!