04-03-2017

Fourth Grade Readers [2016-2017]

Before we can talk in depth about my curriculum choices for Sydney, it’s time to first tell you about all the good books we are reading!

The way I schedule this is pretty simple, she has 4 weeks to read 1 biography and 1 fiction. We have 8 weeks to read a read aloud fiction. She gets to pick the order, I don’t care so long as they all get read by the end of the school year.

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The Phantom Tollbooth | Holes | The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
Running Out of Time | The Indian in the Cupboard

Readers

Mr. Lemoncello’s Library Olympics | Tuck Everlasting |Skinny Bones | The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane |Because of Winn-Dixie
Lunch Money | Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library | Ella Enchanted | Sara, Plain and Tall | Prince Caspian

Biographies

Christopher Columbus | Sally Ride | Pablo Picasso| Eleanor Roosevelt | Abraham Lincoln
Harriet Tubman | Sacagawea | Rosa Parks | Annie Oakley | Roald Dahl

03-23-2017

Preschool with Zachary

 Well, I’ve since talked about Audrey. I guess it’s time to talk about everyone else’s curriculum choices in depth. So next up is my youngest homeschooler, Mr. Zachary! Zachary went to a fabulous preforming arts preschool last year, so when I started trying to do our Letter of the Week curriculum I realized that he was getting bored very quickly, often asking for more work to do, and whizzing through it very quickly. So, again, we changed midyear.Zachary

 

Zachary is currently working his way through The Good and the Beautiful‘s Pre-K course book. We are also using some of our favorite supplements from Confessions of a Homeschooler‘s LOTW curriculum, along with using worksheets from Preschool Mom. I absolutely love the silly worksheets! They trace the letter, write the letter, circle the letters, color a coordinating animal, and then try to draw their own! Zachary LOVES these worksheets and has so much fun trying to draw the animals. The suppliments we are using from LOTW are the Do a Dot worksheets, Zachary loves the dot markers and is so excited to work on those. He actually asks daily to do them, but he only gets to do them every other day. He also does all cut and paste worksheets and coloring pages from LOTW. We do them as we learn the letter with Pre-K from The Good and the Beautiful. He should be finished with Pre-K in a few more weeks, and when he’s done we will move on to All About Reading‘s Pre-Reading to prepare him for Kindergarten next year. We are also using the Coconut Tree from previous years, putting up the letters are we pass them off. This spring he is also participating in t-ball, which will be a new adventure for our family.

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03-16-2017

First Grade with Audrey

I previously talked about switching curriculum midyear with Sydney, and a reader commented to ask about Audrey! So, here it is. Miss Audrey Thyme is now 6 years old and she’s in the 1st grade.

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Audrey is currently taking the following classes as part of her first grade curriculum; reading, grammar, history, science, math, art, dance and piano. She does piano with a lady from church who puts together a wonderful Harry Potter themed piano curriculum and we LOVE IT. Audrey is a Hufflepuff 😉 She’s currently taking ballet and musical theatre with out beloved Teacher Annie.

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Audrey was not reading at the beginning on first grade. So our main focus was on getting her ready to read. So we focused on reading, math and art. At the beginning of the school year we were doing science with Book Shark but I didn’t love it, especially because Sydney was doing a different level and it left me feeling exhausted trying to teach two different sciences. She joined in on Story of the World history lessons, but they quickly lost her attention. Slowly, but surely she started picking up on reading. In February she completed All About Reading Level 1 and started on Level 2. Since she was starting to read we decided it was time to add in some grammar. Sydney had just started The Good and the Beautiful for Language Arts and since they offered a free download I went through the table of contents to figure out which lessons to teach Audrey. The Good and the Beautiful have their own reading curriculum and spelling involved in their Kindergarten and First Grade LA. I didn’t want to include that since she was doing well with AAR, so I combined the lessons from K and Level 1 for a modified version for Audrey. She is absolutely loving their curriculum!

Like I said, Story of the World just wasn’t holding Audrey’s attention and my brain works very similarly to Audrey’s. So it also wasn’t holding MY attention. Since I was absolutely loving G&B I decided to give their history program a try. And guess what?! It totally rocks. My girls are loving it. It’s basically my dream curriculum, I really wanted to teach history in a “family style” setting so that all my kids could go through history together and then have assignments based on their age. This is perfect for that and even has the assignments listed out by ages! Big win.

Since I wasn’t loving Book Shark with two different science curriculum I decided to give Real Science 4 Kids a try. Even though the name really bothers me, I don’t like reading bingo. But it offered the opportunity to teach multiple children at the same time so I decided to give it a go as well. What we were doing wasn’t working. So if it’s not working it’s time to figure out why and how to fix it! This curriculum is VERY different than how I’ve ever taught science before, and it’s too soon to say for sure if it’s working or not. But I am enjoying it, and it’s not leaving me as exhausted as Book Shark was.

Math-U-See is one of the few things we’ve kept the same this year! It’s also the only math curriculum we’ve ever used. No complaints, ever. Audrey loves it, she’s whizzing through Alpha this year and is amazing at her addition skills!

Home Art Studio is in the same boat as MUS. We’ve used it since the beginning of our homeschool journey, and we aren’t changing it now!

So there is Audrey’s official curriculum list. It’s a bit smaller than Sydney’s load was when she was in 1st grade, but we like to tailor everything to the needs of the child. Audrey is flourishing with this load and honestly I think I probably overloaded poor Sydney when she was in first grade. Audrey benefits being the second child 😉

01-25-2017

When Boredom Hits…

So…it’s been a while since my last post. Quincey is now 8 months (tomorrow), Sydney turned 9, and Ruby turns 2 next week.

I love my blog and I really need to get better at updating this! Eeesh.

Well, here’s the update on our homeschooling situation.

Siblings

I’ve posted before about when homeschooling becomes hard and how it’s best to just power through the times when you have zero motivation.

But what about when that time stretches for a lot longer than a few weeks?

We’ve used Sonlight/Book Shark since our first year of elementary school with Sydney (2012), and we’ve used The Well Trained Mind’s programs for history, writing, and grammar since the first grade with Sydney (2013.)

But this year, in the 4th grade? Sydney and I were BURNT OUT and BORED.

It was bad, guys. Really bad. We ended up so far behind and just hating it, we’d get ready to do Writing with Ease and she didn’t want to do, and what’s worse? I didn’t want to teach it!

And it wasn’t like she hated writing, she is currently in the process of writing her own book, she’s always making  up stories and wanting to write them down.

We just didn’t want to do the curriculum work.

So what do you do then? Do you suck it up and push through?

In our case, NO. I found a new curriculum. What’s better is that they offered a free download for it!

Enter The Good and the Beautiful curriculum.

Sydney and I are both really enjoying it!

I like that I’m not reading the exact same instructions every single day. I like that in the 4th grade she’s mostly responsible for doing her own work, but that there are times we can do it together.

I like that it incorporates art history into it.

I’m pretty much in love!

We also had to do some major changes with our science and our history curriculum, because it just wasn’t happening.

And school not happening? Not really an option!

07-01-2016

One Month! | Quincey Nox

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We’ve survived our first month as a family of seven! Yey!!

Ah, Mr. Quincey…

Size: He’s 8lbs 13oz and 21 inches long! He wears size newborn clothes and newborn diapers.

Eating: Exclusively breastfed. He pretty much never stops eating. He also spits up a lot too.

Sleep: No schedule yet, he pretty much eats all the time during the day but at night he will do 2-3 hour stretches. He likes to be wrapped tightly, and be warm while sleeping. Currently he sleeps in our bed. It’s hard to get him to stay asleep for longer than a few minutes, so once we succeed he stays wherever it was that he fell asleep at.

Comfort items: He isn’t hugely fond of the pacifier. He does try to get his thumb in his mouth, but he’s not successful. So basically it’s mama.

Milestones: He’s starting to smile!

05-26-2016

Quincey Nox | Birth Story

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Well, Quincey was due May 15th. Naturally that date came and went. At 41 weeks I had to do a non-stress test and an ultrasound to make sure he was looking good. Which he was.

Wednesday (May 25) was a weird day for me. My hands were so swollen that I couldn’t hold a pencil while doing school with Audrey. And Ruby kept crying, this wasn’t different than any normal day but it really upset me and I ended up calling Jordan and asking if he could come home, which he did. Dr. Sara said that if I had told her that she definitely would have known I was having the baby that night/early morning. As it was, her guess was Thursday anyway.

My mom had been texting me that night saying that I was having a baby on Thursday. So she was going to sleep early so she’d be ready for the call. Lauren texted me similar messages as well. There had also been many messages from friends telling me they thought Thursday would be the day.

That night we went to bed around 10:30 p.m. As we laid in bed I told Jordan that I was suddenly very nervous to go through labor again. Surprisingly he was very reassuring, and I drifted off to sleep. (Jordan usually saves all sympathy for the actual labor, and reminds me that I wanted more babies, so labor is part of that. He’s not wrong.) I woke up about 3 times between that time and the 12:30 am. I was crampy, having some Braxton Hicks contractions, but really nothing new except that they’d occasionally wake me. At 12:30 am I got out of bed and started pacing the downstairs. My sister-in-law was working so I was texting her, and let her know I thought I was in VERY early labor. Every time I’d sit down or try to lay back in bed everything would feel intense. But not like contraction intense, it was just really uncomfortable and I didn’t want to hold still.

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At 1:30 am I no longer wanted to be alone. I still wasn’t having real contractions, but I was uncomfortable and wanted company. So I woke Jordan up. It was seriously the weirdest thing I’ve ever done. “Um, I’m uncomfortable and lonely, will you pace with me?”

For the next 20 minutes we paced, and cleaned the downstairs. I just couldn’t hold still! Then at 1:50 am I had my first real contraction. It wasn’t super painful, but it definitely required some attention to get through. I had been instructed since the beginning of my pregnancy that as soon as I had a real contraction I was to call Dr. Sara, because Ruby was born so quickly. There was a bit of an internal questioning as to if I really should. I mean, I’d literally had one contraction. And I was still very much in control of my brain. But I followed orders and told him to call Dr. Sara. In the 30 minutes it took for her to get to me I had another 5 contractions. I still didn’t want to lay down or sit, so I kind of knelt on the floor on the side of my couch and would rock my hips as Jordan applied pressure as I’d have contractions.

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This was the weirdest labor I had experienced. It didn’t start off really intense. In between contractions the midwives, Jordan and I just chatted. I felt a little discouraged, and pretty certain that this was going to fizzle out and that I had wasted everyone’s time. Lauren was called around 3 am to come, and she joined in on the conversation.

Around 5 am everything was set up and the birth tub was ready to go. So I jumped on in! I love the warm water when I’m in labor. While I was in the tub I played with my phone, Jordan, Lauren and the midwives took a nap. I was boredWhich made me certain that labor was going to stop at any second. Or that I at least had several more hours or days until my baby was coming out. Dr. Sara kept telling me that this was a much more “normal” labor than what I had previously experienced and that it wasn’t going to fizzle.

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Around 7 my mother-in-law joined us, and at 8 my mother did. I was grateful for some new people to talk to, since my current companions were very tired and taking naps (as they should! Nothing was really happening.) We also invited my sister-in-law to join us, and she did after her shift.

The girls woke up around 8 in the morning, and sat on the bed for a while. Sydney quickly lost interest but Audrey wanted to help pour water on my back. Although, she REALLY wanted to get into my tub! haha.

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Around 8:30/9 things finally started to pick up and it became the labor pain that I had previously experienced. Very intense and needing help, a lot of help. As usual my back hurt so badly, and I asked Dr. Sara to break my water because I knew that would relieve the pressure in my back. And it did. I started trying to push around 9, but it was different. It hurt, it didn’t feel relieving at all.

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It was the strangest sensation I’d ever felt. It hurt to push. But it also hurt to not push. I also felt that while I was pushing he wasn’t moving. Around 10 I decided I wanted to lay on my bed, so out of the tub I went. During this time I wasn’t doing so well, I was hurting badly. I was pushing hard and felt like he wasn’t moving and I was using up all my energy trying to get this kid out. Dr. Sara put me into different positions to try to help him come out. Very slowly he was starting to come out. But pushing was really hard this time. I would hyperventilate between contractions trying to catch my breath, I was squeezing Jordan’s hand so hard that it was also hurting. I kept saying that I couldn’t do it, and I truly believed I couldn’t.

 After an hour and a half of pushing he finally was born, and he was placed on my chest. Born Thursday May 26th, 2016 at 10:43 a.m. Quincey kept going from anterior to posterior while I was pregnant, and he couldn’t make up his mind in labor either. He came out kind of funky, which is why it hurt so badly to push him out and why it took so much more work to get him out.

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This is when things got scary. With Quincey also came a big gush of blood. Or as Jordan calls it “a blood waterfall.” Dr. Sara told someone to get ready to call 911. Dr. Mia instantly grabbed a shot of pitocin and stabbed it in my leg, then grabbed a second shot. Dr. Sara gave me a suppository and Joy (the student midwife) put pills in my mouth while Dr. Mia started an IV. This all happened within a few minutes, and the bleeding subsided so it was determined that we didn’t need to call 911, the storm had passed.

The older kids came in and said hello to their new brother. Sydney cut his cord. The mood in the room had returned to being light and fun and enjoying the new baby. The kids then got ready to go to Grandm’a house while Dr. Sara weighed Quincey. 7lbs 9oz, the exact same weight as Zachary.

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And then comes what is suppose to be the easy part. The placenta. Except that it wasn’t coming. And it hurt really badly to try to push it out. Dr. Sara also tried to help it detach but it wasn’t budging. So it was time to call 911 and be transported to the hospital. At this point my wonderful mother-in-law grabbed my four older kiddos and put them in the car, making sure they were gone before the ambulance came.

The firefighters got there first. They tried to start an IV (it didn’t work) and then the EMTs got there. Since I was on a bed, had lost a lot of blood and had said a few times that I was really tired (Dr. Mia was making me tell her stories to try to keep me awake, I was slurring all my words and had super foggy brain, so this was a difficult task) they decided it was best to have the firefighters carry me out of the house using my bed sheets to help them. I guess this is one of the times it’s really good to be so small. Because that’s exactly what they did, carrying me out to the stretcher outside of my house.

Despite being scared, tired, and trying to stay awake I managed to tell Lauren that she needed to be the one to put Quincey in his car seat, because I knew she’d make sure he was properly buckled and fitted. Jordan and Dr. Sara were riding with me, Quincey was going with Lauren and meeting us at the hospital.

Once in the ambulance they started (successfully) another IV and hung up another bag of fluids. We got to skip the ER visit and went straight to Labor and Delivery where I was greeted by about 6 nurses and a doctor. The doctor’s bedside manner was lacking, especially because I was so scared to begin with. First thing she said to me was, “It’s probably placenta accreta and you’ll need a hysterectomy in that case.” This didn’t help anything for me in the whole “I’m terrified” department. (Placenta accreta is when the placenta embeds into a previous c-section scar and cannot detach because of placement.)

Once at the hospital they started yet another IV, and did several ultrasounds of my uterus to see where that placenta was and to figure out why it wasn’t detaching. During the ultrasound I lost it and started crying. I cried because I was so scared. I cried because I didn’t want to have a hysterectomy at this point in my life. I cried because I was so tired. I cried because I hurt so badly. I cried because I couldn’t move. I cried because I couldn’t hold my baby the way I wanted. I cried because I was crying and therefore felt like a big baby.

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They scheduled my surgery, it looked like it wasn’t placenta accreta and that I’d probably just need a D&C. But first we had to wait for blood, in case I needed a transfusion. That took a few hours. During this time they called in anesthesia to talk to me. She told me my options and my best option was to have a spinal, which made me start crying all over. My last experience with a spinal was with Audrey and it was so awful that Jordan didn’t want to have anymore children, and I didn’t want to birth in a hospital or with drugs ever again. So the idea of having a spinal was terrifying. Jordan and I talked it over and agreed that while it was scary, it was the best course of action. The anesthesiologist told me they could give me something to relax me, then give me the spinal. So it sounded a little better.

Poor Quincey pooped right as he was born and managed to cover himself in it. So Dr. Sara gave him a bath while we waited in the hospital. Poor kid had poop in his hair.

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But we were still waiting for blood. And as the time ticked by I was in more and more pain. My back was cramping really badly, and I had 3 IVs and a blood pressure cuff. My anxiety was getting worse, I don’t do well with the anticipation of pain. The nurse kept saying that my uterus was filling with clots, which is why it was hurting so badly. But I wouldn’t let them touch me to “massage” them out, I had beyond reached my pain threshold. I couldn’t really move, and I wanted to just sit up and snuggle my baby, but I wasn’t able to. And as I watched the clock tick by I was becoming more and more terrified of what was going to happen during surgery. I hadn’t been given anything for pain at this point, and my back was becoming unbearable. I was also so thirsty, the back of my throat was so dry.

Finally at 4:00 p.m. they gave me the medicine to relax me and took me down to surgery. I gave everyone in the room strict instructions to make sure Jordan slept while I was gone. He had also gone through so much and he needed to sleep as well. My mom and Dr. Sara were still there and able to snuggle my baby while he slept. Once I was in the OR I was so relieved to see Tonia, the older sister of one of my best friends. I started crying all over again because it was so nice to see someone I knew, especially when I was so scared.

The anesthesiologist was awesome and got my spinal in on one try. Thank goodness! And while I still cared a lot about being there and having the spinal, I wasn’t so scared that I was dry heaving (like I was with Audrey.) Once I started going numb they laid me down and I told the anesthesiologist that I was still scared, and she asked if I wanted to go to sleep, which I really wanted to do. So she gave me some more medicine to make me sleepy, put a small pillow on my eyes and I went to sleep. I woke up to her taking off the pillow and the doctor telling me that it was the best case scenario. They didn’t even do a D&C. The actual procedure of manual extraction took about 10 minutes.

Since I was now completely numb from about my ribs down life was dandy. I got to keep my uterus, my back wasn’t hurting. I was being wheeled down to recovery where I’d be met by my husband and my sweet baby. The nurse helped me roll onto my side so I could just snuggle Quincey, which is what I did for the full 2 hours in recovery while Jordan and I talked. At this point the hormones kicked into high gear and I couldn’t stop shaking, they probably had some help from the medication. At this point I was told that at 9 p.m. they’d be taking some blood to determine if I still would need a blood transfusion. I had lost 1800 cc of blood, and had spent most of my pregnancy anemic (although thanks to iron infusions I wasn’t at the time I delivered Q.)

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At this point Jordan also told me that we didn’t have a car. So when it was time to go home we’d need someone to give us a ride. That’s what happens when you are brought via ambulance.

Besides getting to hold my baby the best thing happened, I finally got to drink water! Yey! Seriously, that was awesome.

My 9:00 p.m. labs showed that my iron levels had gone down to 7.2. Dr. Sara had suggested before she left that if they suggested the blood transfusion that I should do it, that it would help me feel better quicker, and we wouldn’t have to worry as much about fainting, anemia, anxiety or problems with breast feeding. Originally my nurse told me that I wouldn’t be doing a blood transfusion because my numbers were above the threshold. So I got all excited about going home! Until Dr. D came in and told me that the threshold was a 7, so I was barely above the threshold and she strongly recommended that I do the transfusion, for all the same reasons that Dr. Sara had talked to me about.

I was then taken to a post partum area, and they got things set up. Around this time I told Jordan to go get something to eat, because 10 p.m. is really late to be getting dinner and the cafeteria closed at midnight. He was halfway to the door when he realized that he also didn’t have a wallet. Dangit! I told him to call his sister and ask her if she’d bring him some food, because I was only given jello cups and crackers. It wasn’t filling me up, let alone him. (At one point I requested to be brought 20 red jello cups. I think the nurse thought I was kidding since she only brought me 1 at a time. I wasn’t joking. I hadn’t eaten in 24 hours, I was starving!) He refused and said he’d be fine. Luckily, she called and asked if she could come visit and asked if she could bring anything, and she brought him some food and pjs.

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Blood transfusions take a long time! They gave me two units of blood, and each unit takes about 2 hours.  They started the first unit around midnight, the second just after 2 am. I was still unable to sleep, but I could move my legs, so I asked if I could get out of bed, for the first time in 11 hours. My nurse originally wanted to remove my catheter but I was starting to get a little tired so she left it in so I could just sleep and not worry about going to the bathroom until I’d napped. They got me up and out of bed, cleaned me all up, remade my bed. It was a little strange to me, because previously when getting out of a hospital bed I’m in a lot of pain and I require a lot of help. I was a little shaky on my feet at first, but was totally fine as I had no stitches from Q’s birth and nothing from them removing my placenta.

But I still had 3 IVs and a blood pressure cuff. Moving my arms was difficult, and any moment that Quincey wasn’t in my arms he was crying. Around 3 am I asked Jordan if he’d snuggle with the baby so I could sleep just a little bit. This was the first time I’d slept in almost 2 days, and before I fell asleep I was starting to get a headache from my lack of sleep. Thankfully Quincey accepted Jordan’s snuggles and I got to sleep for three hours.

Finally at noon it was time to go home! My sister-in-law brought Jordan and I lunch from Burgerville and Jamba Juice. My in-laws brought my other children so they could see Quincey. And then they finally took out all my IVs, I had to sit in a wheelchair to leave because my feet were so swollen from fluids that I couldn’t put on shoes. But it was finally time to get back home and snuggle my sweet baby in my bed!

So the stats:

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Quincey Nox Sherman
May 26th, 2016 @ 10:43 am
7lbs 9oz 19.5 inches long

9 hours of labor, 1.5 of pushing.
(Totally not impressed, Q.)

05-13-2016

While I Wait…

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So here I am, two days before my guess date with my Quincey Nox.

This part of pregnancy is always really hard on me since I was pregnant with Audrey. It was especially hard with Zachary.

Being a VBA2C mama, I always tend to think, “If I’d just had a scheduled c-section I’d have a 5 day old baby right now.” This was especially true with Zachary, when he was 21 days late.

There is nothing wrong with deciding to have a repeat c-section instead of a VBAC, that’s not what this post is about.

But mentally I’m pretty exhausted with this whole pregnant thing. I’m jealous of those who don’t have to hit their due date. I’m jealous of all the sweet mama’s hold their newborns that I see on my Facebook feed. So I decided to come up with a list of why it’s better for me to wait this out.

  1. I really like my provider this time. She’s a naturopath doctor, and she’s really amazing. In order to get this baby out right now I’d have to switch providers, and I really don’t want to do that.
  2. Yup, I wake up to pee every few hours in the middle of the night. Making sound effects as I roll out of bed. And then I’m thirsty, so I go downstairs and drink water. You know, so I can pee again in a few hours. And while this cycle sucks. At least I am capable of getting out of the bed without being in intense pain from a c-section incision.
  3. Ruby wants to be held often. I can still (kind of) easily hold her. This absolutely wouldn’t be possible if I was recovering from a c-section.
  4. Zachary and Ruby’s skin? Pretty much perfect with no signs of eczema. I contribute this to a vaginal birth, delayed first bath, and breastfeeding. All things I wasn’t able to do for my c-section babies.
  5. It’s allergy season and I can sneeze without feeling like I’m going to die.
  6. I can also cry when hormones get the better of me.
  7. Quincey isn’t here because he’s not ready. Plain and simple. When Zachary was born we realized that if I’d had a repeat c-section like my OB recommended, he would have been born 4 weeks earlier. Zachary was born at 43 weeks weighing 7lbs 9oz. He would not have done well being born the month before.
  8. Despite my jealousy, I am really very thankful for my body. It has safely and successfully grown 5 people. FIVE. It protects them, it nourishes them, and it keeps them in there FOREVER. I am blessed with weeks. Which is much better than the alternative.
  9. Relearning how to pee is seriously stressful. And panic inducing. And just flat out sucks.
  10. Major abdominal surgery is just not for me. I don’t do well with it. My babies don’t do well with it. So I am grateful for those amazing midwives in 2012 who took a chance on me and allowed me to let my body do what it knew how to do. And I am beyond grateful that I have the option and ability to VBA2C, successfully and safely.
  11. I’m just now starting to regain some of the feeling in my c-section scar. It no longer has phantom pains or itches. It is finally starting to lose the pins and needles feeling if I poke it. I don’t want to start that process all over again if it’s not a medical emergency 😉

Good things come to those who wait. Quincey’s gonna be great. I’m not a patient person, but somehow I’m pretty good at waiting for people to show up like they say they will. So, baby Q, I’m waiting for you!

04-14-2016

Ten Favorites on Thursday | Mama Must Haves

I LOVE lists! Not that I’m great at sticking to them, but I do love to make lists.

So here’s your top 10 lists of mama must haves after a baby is born. Now, I’m talking like RIGHT after the baby is born, within the first two weeks. Most of these will not get a long in-depth explanation because I think we can all use our imaginations and figure out how awesome they are.

1. Motherlove Sitz Bath Spray

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This spray is awesome for all the owies post birth. I usually make sure to have a bottle in my purse in case we aren’t at home and I don’t have my peri bottle.

2.Tucks Witch Hazel Pads

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Much better than toilet paper.

3. Earth Mama Angel Baby Nipple Butter

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Just guess. 😉

4. Cramp Bark

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Having had 4 babies I now know that after pains are a real thing, and they are extremely painful. I’m not huge on pain medication, I think it’s important to feel pain it keeps you from doing too much too soon while you’re healing. I also don’t like taking pain medication when I feel pretty good, but have a couple of minutes of pain every few hours. So cramp bark tinctures are awesome. Make sure you buy some orange juice to chase it down with, it’s nasty tasting!

5. Bamboobies Nursing Pads

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They are heart shaped. What could be better? Also, I prefer reuseable, because I like to be a hermit the first few weeks after baby is born.

6. Nursing tanks

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Takes away the hassle of figuring out a nursing bra and a shirt.

7. Bathrobe

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For when people visit.

8. A good TV show to binge watch

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Netflix is my best friend. Sydney and I binge watched Gilmore Girls and Veronica Mars during our middle of the night feedings. Audrey and I watched Grey’s Anatomy. Zachary and I were enjoying Bones. Ruby and I really into Gossip Girl. I just found out that Roseann is on Netflix, so Quincy and I will be enjoying that.

9. Belly Bandit

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Definitely helped any separation of my abdominal muscles post Ruby. I’ll be using one again after Quincy.

10. Motherlove Thrush Relief

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I seem to have a problem with yeast, despite never personally having any problems. But my babies get it and we exchange it back and forth. It’s fun. Motherlove Thrush works GREAT. It also doesn’t dry you out.

02-22-2016

28 Week | Baby Q

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A friend asked me to do more pregnancy updates on the blog. So here you go.

Baby Quincy is now 28 weeks along. We’ve now hit the THIRD trimester! Yey!

For the most part this pregnancy has been rather uneventful, symptom wise.

But at 23 weeks I went in for my anatomy scan, and it was just about the weirdest ultrasound I’ve ever had.

It started with the doctor saying, “You’re here for a 20 week scan?” Yes. “You’re TWENTY weeks?” No, I’m 23 weeks. “Oh, wow, you’re really small!” Thanks?

Then he was getting everything set up and he goes, “Wait, have you had a c-section?” Yup, two of them. “You’ve had TWO of them?!” (Puts his face inches from my c-section incision) “Wow, you’ve got great skin! You healed really well.” Again, thanks? Please get away from my incision and focus on my belly.

Anyhow, Quincy measured right where he should, and his head measured 4 days bigger than his body. So another big brained baby is in my future. He’s still a boy, and he has all his vital organs and they look amazing. And then I got asked the weirdest question ever.

“Have you ever been told you have a short cervix?”

Um, no. What does that mean?

“Well, it could be indicative of preterm labor. If you make it the third trimester you should have it rechecked.”

Um, IF?! I had 5 weeks left. Are you telling me I’m going to have a micro premie in the next five weeks?!

Wonderful. Anyway, talked to my midwife, looked up the info from all previous ultrasounds, and we’ve come to the conclusion that I’m probably just fine. With Ruby I was short and dilating at 36 weeks and still went another 4 weeks. So, Baby Q, you’d better stay in there for another 8 weeks minimum.

Anyhow, here are some stats for you:

Total weight gain? 10 lbs. Which made WIC really unhappy. Apparently I need to up my calorie intake so I fit into the grey area of their chart. Not happening!

Maternity clothes? Yes, I’ve been wearing the shirts for a while. But I finally gave in and started wearing the pants.

Stretch marks? Nothing new. I haven’t had any new ones since Audrey.

Sleep? Thanks to my Cal/Mag supplement GREAT. I’m still exhausted though.

Best moment this week? Making it to the third trimester! Seriously, such a relief!

Miss anything? Breathing normally.

Movement? He’s finally starting to move a lot! Jordan even got to feel him! He’s still not super crazy like several of my babies, but he wiggles.

Food cravings? Poptarts, Circus cookies, Rainbow goldfish. Basically every 2 year old’s dream food.

Anything making you feel sick or queasy? Nope.

Showing? Yup.

Gender? Boy!

Labor signs? None.

Symptoms? Heartburn. Burning all the hair off my baby.

Belly button in or out? In. When I had my endometrosis surgery in 2014 they glued my belly button back together very nicely. So it’s way cuter than it was after my first three babies. That was very kind of Dr. C 😉

Wedding ring on or off? On.

Happy or moody most of the time? Happy, just tired from severe anemia.

Looking forward to: Starting Q’s blanket!

01-29-2016

One Year Old! | Ruby Lyndis

First birthdays are hard on me. I can’t believe how quickly it flies by! The days are so long sometimes, but the years are so short!

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Anyhow, Miss Ruby is now ONE.

This year I gave a hair flip to tradition and decided to have a birthday party at our house instead of going to Izzy’s Pizza. Because I just didn’t feel like it. Her party was also the day AFTER her birthday. Ooooo.

And you know what? It was awesome.

Ruby got to run around our living room being held by various family members, she got to take her time with her cake and really enjoy it. She got to sit on the floor with me and open her presents. Or rather, sit in the boxes, because kids and cats are pretty alike when they are one.

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I seriously cannot believe that the first year is already over.

In the last month she’s really started to walk everywhere.

She finally started to sleep in her OWN bed. Bittersweet.

When we tell Ruby “no” she smiles and waves at us. Then tries to do it anyway.

She is a HUGE fan of bathtime.

Whenever you pick her up she rests her head on your shoulder. And if you aren’t moving she will start to kick you.

She says uh-oh, loves food of all kinds.

Refuses to give up the bottle yet. Whatever.

Loves her pacifier but if she can’t find it she will suck on her thumb.

At 1 year she weighs 17lbs 4oz, and 29.5 inches long. Petite and perfect. She has four teeth.

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Happy birthday, sweet Ruby Roo! We love you so much, and are so happy you are part of our family!!