30 August 2009

Our First Days...




I am so glad to be home! Our first few days home as a family of four was wonderful. Mia is doing exceptionally well considering my limitations to hold and care for her. Justin really stepped up to the plate and reminds me a 100 times per day to go lay down. When I tell him I feel stressed out about the dishes or cluttered floor he jumps right up and takes care of it. Of course he is my main wing man when it comes to caring for Amelia. She is a bit put out with me so greatly favors Justin right now. We went to the park on Friday and he took her yesterday. Amelia is becoming more and more creative when it comes to helping herself. Justin found her in the garage on Friday covered in black grease from the exhaust pipe on my car. She thought the black stuff was paint so covered her hands with the mucky junk. She ate three cuppy cakes for breakfast today...rather licked all the frosting off them. Her new best friend is the tall bar stool. She can climb up on that thing and help herself to the upper cabinets. She found three large cups and walked over the sink (over the counter tops) and started to play with the water. By the time I got up from nursing we had a fun little lake to sop up. She loves being called big sister! Amelia loved to help fetch diapers and snap his onesies. Her nursery leader came by and she was just beaming with pride over showing off her baby brother. By accident Amelia discovered that the straw from my hospital cup whistles. Isn't the picture of her tooting the straw just adorable. She looks like a hippy with her glasses, arranged hair, and awesome highlights! Luckily, Justin became the nap sheriff and convinced Amelia to nap in her own bed. I am in heaven!

Phillip is already growing. He cries only when hungry and when his nose is suctioned out. I am completely amazed at the difference between Amelia as an infant and Phillip. He eats, burps (the hardest part), poops, gets a diaper change, stays awake for 10-20 minutes, gets swaddled, popped into the cradle, and boom he is out. Even the night is awesome. His last regular feeding starts at 10:30 then he wakes me up with quiet snuffling around 3 am, feeds, and is out like a light until about 6:30. I can stretch his awake hour for 30-40 minutes with his binky. Goodness gracious...he is a miracle after Amelia. I am in love with his natural baby smell: a mix of soft powder and fresh milk. His skin is so clear and radiant. He makes the funniest little grunts and pulls amazing faces. The first diaper change in the hospital he ended up peeing all over his face. I about died laughing at the grimace of complete shock on his tiny face. Since then he's peed on himself and us more than a couple times. The pee-pee teepees help but he still throws us surprises! He is a bit jaundiced so we try to sunbathe him as often as possible. Now that he is nursing normally his biliruben levels should drop. I am grateful that my Dr was not worried...he expects jaundice in breast fed babies. No running to the Dr every day for a week and tanning beds is so awesome.

Justin is so fun to watch. He croons, "my booooy!" over and over at every chance. I am so glad that my pride did not overcome me when we named him. Every time he calls our baby Phillip a look of utter joy and satisfaction crosses his face. I can't even bring myself to call the baby Anson. I am so willing to let it all go witnessing Justin's joy. I don't even care about the camera...throw that selfish desire to the wind.

Me...I am doing alright. The privations of having a baby by forceps are numerous. I won't list my battle scars but will mention that it will take a lot longer to recover than I anticipated. Sitting down in any form almost makes me pass out! The headaches are pretty manageable and should disappear next week after my spinal fluid reaches a normal level. The Dr asked me to drink a lot of caffeinated soda to help rebuild my spinal fluid. I don't ever want another Mt Dew...even coke is starting to become boring. I really just want to sleep but the caffeine keeps me awake...sleep or headache? Hard choice! Well, that is enough about me. Enjoy some pictures of little Phillip!!

PS: check out my web album for more pics of the past few days at www.picasaweb.google.com/jollijenni3

28 August 2009

Phillip Anson Call







He's HERE! The best part is that we are now home! We got up early Tuesday morning for a scheduled induction at 7 am. Alison took Amelia for the entire day and night. When we arrived the nurse set me up in the labor and delivery room (yes there is only one). My Dr wanted to try a more natural induction so he had the nurse give me a suppository to soften my cervix. He tried two doses, one a 8:30 and the next at 12:30. The doses did not do much for me, my body pretty much did all the work it was going to in the past two weeks. At 4:30 I was at the same dilation and effacement with no real strong contractions. So the Dr started me on a pitocin drip around 5:00 pm. He checked me an hour later and I was dilated to 5, so he broke my water. The contractions were of course about 20 times more painful. I asked for an epidural asap. Justin put on Major Payne for me, sure enough the anesthesiologist came a few minutes into the movie just like with Amelia. My back apparently is primo for epidurals! Unfortunately the pitocin was still going so sitting still was near impossible. The epidural tube ended up sliding down too far creating a spinal and punching through the dural layer. My legs were completely useless. It was so odd to watch the nurses throwing my legs here and there having no spatial attachment to them! Soon after the epidural I was dilated to a 10 and ready to go. They threw my legs up in these mondo stirrups and helped me push when I was ready. The spinal did not include my uterus so I was able to tell when my contractions were there and when to push. My contractions stopped completely at that point because the pitocin was stopped during the epidural. So the nurse started the pitocin again and we waited for 15 minutes until the contractions started again. There is no shame left after having my legs in the air while the Dr and his assistant sat in front of me discussing the weather. LOL...Finally the time came and pushing started. I pushed about 6 times before it became apparent that the baby's head was stuck and not coming down. So the Dr grabbed the forceps and yanked the poor baby out. The accidental spinal ended up being a blessing in disguise. He popped right out with no marks.
The baby was so quiet afterwards I was a little worried. As the Dr waited for the next step in delivery I could feel my blood pressure drop. It dropped to 80 over 30 causing me to go into shock, fainting a couple times, and barfing all over. I have no recollection of what was going on until the anesthesiologist gave me something to pick up my blood pressure. The baby still was not crying...to date I have not heard him cry. Most of the funny pictures of him where it looks like a cry are just grunts and little mewling sounds. He weighed 8lbs 1oz, 19 3/4 inches, and arrived at 8:03 pm. I finally got to hold and nurse him once my BP stabilized. What a cute little man. Justin went home around 11 to get some sleep. I stayed in the delivery room until after 1am. I felt awesome until the nurse had me stand up to get in the wheelchair. My head exploded with the worst headache I've EVER had. The nurse gave me percoscet, which did absolutely nothing for the headache. Turns out the spinal was leaking fluid out of my back causing my brain to sag each time I sat or stood. They were going to let me go home Wednesday night but kept me because I kept blacking out from the headache. The anesthesiologist ended up giving me a spinal patch around 2 pm on Thursday. He injected 15 cc's of my blood into the spinal area. I laid flat for an hour while the blood congealed creating a patch over the spinal leak. Within another hour my headache was 90% gone! It was amazing! I was home by 5 pm on Thursday.
Amelia is doing very well so far. The first time she came she was very stand-offish until I showed her my awesome bed remote control. She enjoyed pushing the bed up and down. At one point I asked if we could take the baby home. She said "No, put it back!" She love giving kisses and stroking his head. The hardest part now is not being able to really hold her. Due to the spinal patch I can't bend over or pick up anything besides Phillip until Monday. I am SO glad Justin is home at my beck and call. It is hard to remember my limitations at this time.
As you can see we named him Phillip Anson Call. Phillip is Justin's great grandfather's name, of which I just found out today he never went by Phillip but used his middle name. Anson is also Justin's ancestor. When our Phillip was born Justin said a whole host of angels and ancestors were in attendance to welcome him to this world. I am sure both Phillip and Anson were there. It seemed like the most appropriate name in spite of my reservations. If you ever call him Phil I will not be happy! His name is Phillip....

23 August 2009

Last Pregnancy Photo




I decided to take a picture of my belly at 40 weeks in the same outfit I had on at 36 weeks. Not much of a difference...my belly is a little lower (thank goodness) and a smidge bigger. I am glad to have an induction date. Like with Amelia I had some early labor that stopped. This whole week I only had about 6 hours of minor labor. I am glad he will be born on the 25th, to keep with our family's pattern of birthdays on multiples of 5. Also with a secure date I am busy planning, cleaning, finishing projects, and resting up. This week I read 4 books already! If you want a fun read try the Percy Jackson series.

My awesome friend Catherine sent me a fun pattern for my birthday. I whipped up a dress this week for Amelia. Thursday afternoon I nearly drove all the way to Cheyenne for a third fabric choice. Instead I made due with what I had and the dress turned out cute, still not what I had in mind. The white fabric ended up showing the machine needle holes instead of closing around the thread. Maybe after a good wash it will look better. I learned a new gathering trick that made this dress a simple make. After cutting it out the whole sewing process took about 2 hours. The hat was crocheted on a little jaunt down to Sterling on Friday evening. The last little project was covering a head thingy for the baby's car seat. It matches the car seat cover I made! Too cute!!

Justin suggested we drive down to Sterling for dinner on Friday to a yummy restaurant there. I had the most delicious spinach salad EVER. Amelia now owns a little princess backpack, she marched into the restaurant with her pink cowgirl boots, a rakish hat, and backpack. What a funny little person. She prays all the time now. This evening she prayed for her princess fingers, the light (she paused and said, I love the light), stars, Alison, Miekka, her Elmo toothbrush, flower shoes, princess diapers, Matt's birthday, cute chairs, primary songs, monkey books, her Mimi's, baby brother, and delicious grapes. All of this was listed without any help from me! I need to get a video!! Her imagination is starting to flourish. Justin was in the bathroom on Friday. He blew his nose quite loudly, and Mia exclaimed, "Mommy, isa elephant!" I said, "no it's Daddy." She said, "aohhhh, lika Daddy Elephant?!" Yep! Like a Daddy elephant!

Today was a crazy day at church. Amelia was totally hyped up on goof balls, bouncing off the pews and floor like a ball of energy. She actually requested nursery half way through. The bishop stood up to conduct and she asked if he was Superman! LOL. I gave lesson 32 in Gospel Doctrine. Holy Smokes, that was an emotional lesson on the martyrdom of Joseph and Hyrum Smith. The spirit was so strong a couple times that silence prevailed. I am so very grateful for the restoration of the gospel and all the knowledge Joseph restored to this Earth. I would be so empty without the knowledge of the gospel. It consumes me!

Alison and Matt invited us over for Matt's birthday dinner and cake. As usual Alison whipped up a yummy dinner. The cake was delicious! Matt took Justin and Morley night fishing yesterday. They left around 5:30 pm and didn't get home until 3 am. Jeepers! Funny they did not catch any fish!!

Under contract

Saturday we attended an Open House for the second option home on our list. It's been option two for months now. Going through the house for a 4th time we finally decided this was the house to settle on after two failed offers. We measured the house for updated flooring (the dining room and bathroom are carpeted and the kitchen has retro flooring). Pretty much the flooring, new carpet, and possibly new fridge are the only items really needing attention. By 11 am we went back to the realty office and whipped out a new offer. The owner responded by 1:30 pm with a decent counter. We accepted the counter by 4 pm. We signed the offer contract at 5:30 making the deal official...finally under contract.

I am so excited to begin thinking about what we can do with this new home. The outside is perfectly landscaped. The inside is clean and well-taken care of. The crib bedding arrived in the mail on Thursday...which means new decorating ideas for the nursery are soon to come. I think moving 4 weeks after having a baby will be hard but not as hard as next week! I look forward to sorting through our stuff in storage and finally getting everything organized the way I prefer. No more jerry-rigging life in a small apartment. Thanks for all your prayers.

20 August 2009

3 is the name of the GAME


Well, it seems this week is focusing on threes! I made 3 cute outfits, 3 matching hats (not shown), worked with the realtor 3 times, and went from a 4 to a 3 dilation. How that is possible is beyond me!

I went in to the Dr on Monday because all weekend I had pretty consistent contractions. The Dr said I was dilated to a 4 and 90% effaced still. So I started crafting up a storm because sitting on the floor seemed to induce labor. Tuesday night I was having pretty intense labor while making the Halloween outfit. I nearly took myself in because I felt so nauseous and yucky, but decided to drink some water and rest on the couch. Luckily, the outfit was completed...but my labor stopped. Today the Dr said I was dilated to a 3 and 50% effaced. I wanted to punch something in frustration. He scheduled an induction for August 25th at 7 am if nothing happens before then. At least we might be able to keep with the theme of birthdays on multiples of 5 (mine is the 5th, Justin's the 15th, and Mia is the 25th). All day today I felt depressed and out of sorts! The last week or so is very uncomfortable. My ribs feel like they are bruised and other parts are exploding with bouts of pain.

We heard back from the Newton house owner on Friday. He countered our offer with a high counter. We discussed the matter and decided to counter with a mid-range offer, taking into account window replacement, new flooring in kitchen and bathroom (both are carpeted), and a new fridge. He came back with pretty much the same counter. We decided it was not a good investment to spend the amount he wanted and still get out of the home in five years or so. This whole process is so frustrating. Justin emailed a classified ad today for a decked out van...our option C is to live down by the river in a van. We are not sure on our next plan of action.

To brighten my mood a bit I received a fun birthday present from my friend Catherine. She sent me a dress pattern for Amelia to try out! I can't wait to cut some fabric, once I get my hands on three matching fabrics. Justin also ordered me a new black puffy coat for winter. I adore my green one but it gets dirty too quickly when kids are involved. Thanks guys for timely thoughtfulness! I am also very excited that the crib set for baby Call is on the way. I chose the Cocalo line, Monkey Business. I've surfed eBay for weeks now and finally found a 14 piece set that was used in a model home for a year. What luck, used but not really. I saved about 65% of the total cost had I bought it new. Yippee!

19 August 2009

Eleph-ino



What do you get when you cross an elephant and a rhino? An elephino! That is the nickname Justin and I gave a very strange house here in Sidney. This house is owned by the owners of Cabela's. It sits right on main street so anyone coming through town will glimpse this strange monstrosity. I believe the house was under construction for over 5 years and ended this summer. The house has a Mediterranean flair mixed with Spanish, decorated with elephants, rhinos, panthers, and lions. The front of the house looks like a museum with the glass entry way. The front door actually lets you into a museum of taxidermy...hunted by Mr Cabela. All the alcoves of the house are equipped with led lights that change color from purple, blue, green, red, pink, yellow, etc. The strangest embellishment showed up in June: 4 Greek Goddess statues. There are plinths along the other side for more statues. Next year I expect to see nude elephants posed like Greek Goddesses. What a sore thumb! Amelia always comments on the statue's boobies when we pass the house. Maybe elephant goddesses would be better.

14 August 2009

Diaper Shower




I am so lucky to have a friend here in Sidney like Alison! She's made the transition here so bearable. She threw me a baby shower yesterday evening, inviting our ward members. The theme was diapers and as you can see we were greatly blessed. I won't need to get diapers for a while. Alison held the shower at her home. The sisters provided yummy treats to eat. Sister Hackleman even made a super cute baby cake out of fondant. We played two games: guess my due date/time and the size/weight of the baby and a memory game. Alison made grape salsa that was delicious. I will post the recipe. Amelia even got a little dolly and a tiny tea set. This morning she had her three mimi's lined up feeding them out of the tiny cups. She was so dainty. Thank you everyone for the wonderful evening.

Grape Salsa
2 cups coarsely chopped grapes
1/2 cup green onions and diced anaheim chilies (or canned)
2 T cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 t salt
1/8 t bottled hot pepper sauce

1. combine ingredients, mix well
2. allow to stand one hour before serving
3. drain excess liquid before serving
*makes 2 cups

13 August 2009

Nearly There


Phew! I've worked hard the last couple days! Most of the work was unconscious...the Dr said I am dilated to a 4 and 80% effaced! Amelia came very quickly after I reached a 4 so we could have a new little boy any day now. Yipee! My main project of the week was to crochet four hats for Alison's little girl, Ella. Three down and one more to go. I wanted to get Amelia's fall outfits completed but my motivation is about zero. At least crocheting takes little effort. I made up a super cute new pattern, Mia tried out the hat before we gave it to Ella.

Yesterday we had a fun day. I took Ella and Mia visiting teaching with me. Our venture started at 9:50 and ended at 1:30...phew! VT with two toddlers was entertaining! Two of my ladies live in Potter, a town about 20 minutes away. We visit one at the library because she works three jobs to pay for her kid's college tuition. The other lady met us for lunch at the Sundry cafe. I always over order for toddlers, not know how much will be eaten. Both girls chowed their cheese sandwiches but avoided the PB&J like the plague. I enjoyed a yummy Reuben sandwich. The lady we visited at the cafe is the Second Counselor in the RS. We enjoyed a good visit. Only one more to go for the month!

My main goal in writing is to post new videos and give an update on Amelia. Her little imagination is starting to take off. She loves to dress up in her tutu, fairy wings, and have her nails painted. The other evening she imitated a frog for the first time. Her favorite games include putting puzzles together, playing kitchen, and using her large muscles. Amelia loves to climb. Her little step-stool is a constant accessory used to climb up onto the counter, into bed, look in the mirror, and open doors. She even started a load of wash using her stool to reach the buttons. I discovered her pouring herself a bowl of M&Ms for breakfast on Tuesday...on top of the microwave. The same day she called me frantically for help, the little stinker was sitting on top of the fridge. I am having to put her time out more often for hitting and whining. Usually she carries for 10-20 minutes then suddenly snaps out of her little funk and apologizes. The biggest surprise is her ability to recognize letters. We were snuggling one morning and she noticed Justin's pillow had lettering on it (regular firm). She pointed to the "M" and said "mom, it's m like Monkey and A like Mia!" I was floored!

She is sleeping like a charm in her princess bed. She giggles every night when I tuck her into the princess sheets. We do get little surprise visits once in a while. A couple nights ago I about jumped out of my skin when a cold hand pressed my belly button. She was standing there binky in mouth with her hand on my belly. She's surprised Justin several times by the bathroom door at 7:00 am. I need to work on her nap situation. She naps with me but takes about an hour to fall asleep. It is pretty annoying, yet cute to try and nap with a wiggly toddler.

Here are a couple new videos:
Puh-le-ase and Scabies
Fairies
Ribbit

09 August 2009

Denver Weekend

Recent crafts: three hats, one cute lemon outfit, diaper cones (or pee-pee tepees), four photo props called cocoons and bird's nests.

Justin and I had a nice little get-a-way Friday and Saturday. We really wanted to visit the temple before the new baby comes along so this was the perfect chance. Alison volunteered to watch Amelia so that was a huge blessing. Justin got off work early on Friday. We left home around 1:30 pm. I think we arrived at the temple by 5 pm. We stopped at Sonic for a limeade (thanks sweetie, it was yum). Our main topic of conversation was our housing situation. I think we have two solid choices again and so spent a lot of time debating the pros and cons of each house. Pretty much we decided NOT to rent, even though it could be a viable option if the two home choices we have pan through. Alison's father owns 8 homes here in Sidney that he rents out. A huge home is now available for rent so we need to decide soon what to do. Our new choices are the Newton house and the 19th Street house. To see information on them click on the house names! The Newton house appeals to me because of its size, age, and charm. It was built in the 1920s so is not very efficient with utilities. It also has a garage that needs severe attention. The 19th street home is more efficient, smaller, but has an attached garage (which is NICE in the winter). Both are competitively priced so it is basically a matter of how much time and money we want to spend on updates, etc. I think our decision as of now is to offer on the Newton home and see what happens. We saw the home Thursday night and learned how much the property is actually worth so we plan to make a really low offer, the seller is motivated to sell so he may take a low offer! Depending on how inspections go that house is the forerunner. If the seller won't work with us we will offer next on the 19th street home. We REALLY hope that one of these will work. I feel pretty good about our decision so far. It may change but such is life!

The temple was awesome. Our session was really small. I did not realize how small the Denver Temple is. Before we went I read up on the temple's history. When it was first built the neighborhood demanded the temple lights be turned off by 11 pm, after 6 months of this the residents changed their minds! The lights stay on all night now. I love doing temple work! The Denver takes your family names and records them after the session. I was a little concerned when the worker kept my family name. That made me realize how important those names are to me. I did not want to give the name card up.

We went to dinner afterwards at a seafood restaurant. It was super delicious. I had stuffed jalapeno stuffed shrimp! Being pregnant makes it very easy not to overeat. I am very careful to eat slowly as to avoid being up all night with indigestion. We both enjoyed taking our time and having no real plan to follow. The best was sleeping until 9 am! It's been a long time since I last slept in like that.

Saturday morning we spent shopping. Justin followed me to two craft stores (JoAnn and Hobby Lobby), a bookstore, and a local mall. I find malls are filled with useless, extravagant stuff. Mostly we wondered aloud at all the hype and began to enjoy the small, simple comforts of living in Sidney. The distractions are definitely limited. My one outlet was the Pottery Barn Kids store. I slobbered over the really cute baby nursery's and the little girl rooms. I now have fabric for Amelia's seasonal outfits. Please anxiously await new cute projects! For lunch we went to Rodizio Grill. Our hostess seated us in a bummer spot because the servers skipped us more often than not. Still we had our fill of chicken, steak, and pork...pretty much going into a meat-induced coma afterwards. I reminisced over the feijoada eaten regularly on my mission. It was refreshing to hear Portuguese spoken by some of the staff.

Mia was really glad to see us! She did awesome with Alison. Alison ended up putting her train bed in Ella's crib, it worked like a charm. She went to time out once for hitting, staying there for 20 minutes until she apologized. Go Alison! We both enjoyed numerous hugs and kisses from Mia. We had the Haley's over for my favorite birthday cake and ice cream. I made jell-o cake with whipped cream topping. Thanks for the wonderful weekend.

06 August 2009

Me at 32


Alison captured these images while we were at the zoo yesterday.

05 August 2009

My 32nd Birthday






I love birthdays, especially my own! LOL! It was so awesome to get calls from Mom (at the airport), Charity, and James/Miekka. Jana texted me, her preferred method of communication. I enjoyed a card from Grandparents Lance. My visiting teacher also brought me fun little bag of goodies and my neighbor brought over cookies! Also all the facebook birthday wishes were so appreciated.

Alison outdid herself with a fun day at the Scottsbluff Zoo and a trip to Target. She even made two awesome rings and a necklace charm to boot! Justin gave me spending money and the best gift ever: a monitor calibrator. Sounds geeky, eh? Well, it is! Now I can calibrate my monitor to reflect the color schemes of the printing service I use. Means my pictures will turn out exactly how I edit them. I am giddy with excitement.

The zoo was a blast. We left here around 11 am. Our first objective was lunch for the kiddos. Then we walked around and saw all the animals. Mostly monkeys, birds, and a few large animals like lion, tiger, zebra, and buffalo. Mia and Ella loved the lion water fountain. It was pretty warm outside so we were totally stoked about the splash pad. After the animals the kids put on their swim suits and got soaked. Amelia was so funny. Every time she got a little wet she'd run away with this puckered lip face. Super cute!

Target may not sound like a fun trip but when the store is about 2 hours away it becomes a novelty. I found a super cute newsboy cap and some shirts to applique for Mia next year. Amelia got a slurpee to amuse her during my shopping time. She ended up slurpee from head to toe.

I arrived home to find Justin with a pizza in the oven! That was the best ever. He let me play with my new toy then we all went out for ice cream at DQ. Thanks everyone for an awesome birthday.

02 August 2009

Cheyenne Co Fair: Take II

Friday night Justin and I took Amelia back to the fair. First we stopped to see the small animals because Amelia could not stop gushing over the bunnies and chickens. We ran into the Haley family as we went in search for delicious fried fair food. Justin tucked into a corn dog and nachos while I savored chili cheese fries, Mia enjoyed part of a hot dog. She was in some discomfort due to a dirty diaper and rash to boot. Took me a while to figure out she had a yucky diaper. After her bum dried she settled down and quit whining. The ride tickets were a complete rip off. It cost about $20 for two ferris wheel rides and one spin on the train ride for Amelia. Geepers! The money was worth Amelia's delighted face as we spun through the air. She was wedged pretty tight in between us with barely enough room to wiggle her pink boots. Justin showed off his fair face...pretty handsome, eh?! Alison took Amelia and Ella on the train ride. Both girls were nearly squealing with excitement. It was way too cute. Out of the 9 rides available she could only ride 2, so we took another spin on the Ferris wheel. Before leaving we had a funnel cake...in my opinion one of the only reasons to visit the fair! It was super duper delicious.

Yesterday we had a laid-back day. Justin was not feeling too well after catching my digestive bug. Amelia slept in until 9:30 am! She went to bed without getting out Friday AND Saturday nights. Yipee!! She only got up once last night as well. Next task is working on her naps again. Thank you for your supportive prayers. I don't enjoy feeling like a parental failure featured on Nanny 911 or Super Nanny.

In the next little while I will post my latest projects: diapering cones and some photography props. I also had a fun photography session with a little 6 mth old baby in my ward. Check out her cuteness on my photo blog: www.applegreenphotography.blogspot.com