Monday, March 31, 2008

Home Sweet Home

We all made it home and have been hanging out for the past couple of days adjusting to life as a family of four. So far, so good but we have had a lot of help for the past week so it is hard to say how we'll do once we're left all alone! Aaron's parents helped us out last week taking care of Bryn and shuttling her to and from school while Aaron and Grant and I were at the hospital. My mom and John have been here since Friday and have been helping us out and then my step-mother, Cheryl, will be coming in tomorrow. My dad comes in Saturday and they will leave next Tuesday. Are we lucky to have so much help, or what?!?! And then to top it all off my wonderful friends are bringing meals a few times a week all month. Can't beat it!

Grant is doing well and sleeps virtually all the time. I am assuming that is normal for a newborn - there is so much of this that is totally new to us since we didn't get to have Bryn at home for so long. We had no clue what to do about the cord and the whole circumcision thing is pretty icky (Aaron actually went in and held Grant's hand while they did it - needless to say it was not an experience he wishes to repeat). I will be glad when I can just change diapers and give baths without all of the "extras".

I am feeling pretty good. I am going in to get my staples out tomorrow and have my bp checked (it was still a little high today). I am just tired and am not seeming to catch up on much sleep even now that I am home. But I'll get there sooner or later...

On a sad note, Aaron's best friend from high school lost his mom to leukemia. She had battled and beat breast cancer, but couldn't beat this. I met her only a handful of times, but she was quite a woman - I know she will be missed by many. The memorial service is Wednesday and Aaron will head over for that.

I haven't caught up on checking in on all of the blogs I usually read, but will get there sooner or later. In the meantime, thanks to everyone who has checked in and wished us well...

I haven't downloaded new pictures, but here are a couple more from the hospital...

Saturday, March 29, 2008

We're heading home!

We should be getting out of the hospital anytime - we have gotten the all clear to go home. Grants blood sugars stabilized and although my blood pressure is up a bit I get to go home and just keep an eye on it. Wouldn't that be totally ironic if I made it through this pregnancy only to get pregnancy induced hypertension after birth (which is possible, believe it or not)? I also didn't get my staples out (it just didn't sound like a fun activity and the doc wasn't insistent) so I'll go into the office on Wenesday to get a bp check and have my staples removed. Fun!

Grant has been sleeping almost nonstop since he was born...I, on the other hand am looking forward to getting more than an hour and a half of sleep a night! I had forgotten how hard it is to sleep in the hospital and how often babies have to be fed.

Bryn had her first soccer game this morning and it sounds like it went well. Considering she got her sports abilty from me, the fact that she survived the game at all is amazing! I should get to see video when I get home...

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

He's here!

Grant Ray Reed is here! He was born at 12:58 pm and weighs 7 lbs 10 oz, is 18 1/2 inches long and has HUGE cheeks! He is having some issues with his blood sugars but so far is still able to stay in my room and hopefully he won't have to head to the NICU. He has been sleeping almost all day and we have only seen his eyes a couple of times.

Bryn is more excited about him than I thought she'd be - she held him and had quite the conversation with him when she came to the hospital.

I feel pretty good - the c-section went smoothly and my pain is minimal at the moment. I hope to be up and around tomorrow morning and out of the really fashionable compression stockings!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

It's almost time!

Hard to believe the time has come...we will head to the hospital tomorrow at 10 am and I should be out of recovery by 3:30 or so. I had a bit of a scare at the doc's office today - she thought I would be 39 weeks tomorrow instead of 38 and she generally doesn't schedule c-sections before 39 weeks. Aaaaaaah! But my blood pressure was up today and she said she was comfortable going ahead if I was, so now we are hoping for the best and fully developed lungs. With the gestational diabetes, lung development can be slowed but since my sugars have been well controlled hopefully everything is O.K. And if it's not I can beat myself forever over it and have another baby in the NICU - what could be more fun?

The hospital has wireless, so I likely won't be able to resist sharing pictures once I am able to sit up. I'll be back soon!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Counting down

I think I am still in denial that in a couple of days we will have added a new member to our family, but even if I am not mentally prepared, I think we're physically ready! The house is FINALLY pretty well put together - there is only one pile of boxes still needing to be unpacked and I think I can get through them within the next couple of days. And the house is totally clean - I finally broke down and hd someone come in and it looks and smells absolutely wonderful. She even washed the coffeepot, scrubbed the inside of the microwave and did something miraculous to the smooth top stove that I can never get clean. Heaven!

Bryn and I are going to dinner and a movie with Stephanie and Emma tonight - a girl's night out will be fun!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

I made it!

I can't believe I have officially made it full term with this pregnancy! And unless you count the pain and torment of not being able to eat Cadbury mini eggs at Easter time, there has been very little to complain about. I am definitely getting more and more uncomfortabel and have started waddling a little, but with less than a week to go I figure I can handle it!

Bryn and I have had a good week. We went to paint pottery and although she thought she was going to paint and plate she ended up painting a dog figurine and an Easter egg. I made a plate so we did get all the bases covered. We had a good time swimming yesterday although the pool was jam packed and the chlorine fumes were pretty potent. Today Bryn had her 6 year doctor appointment, but even that was O.K. since she didn't have to get shots! She is still taller than she is wide, but managed to stay of the growth chart for weight (she is the 1%ile). The doctor did try to convince her that she needs to try more foods but I am pretty sure no one has enough power to convince her to actually eat more than one tiny bite of what she tries!

Mema had her surgery today for the lumps under her arm and she is doing well. She'll find out next week what exactly they found and what the plan of attack will be.

Nicole (my step-sister) found out yesterday that she is going to have a baby girl, so put little guy will have a little girl cousin his age to play with. Exciting stuff!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Spring Break?

It definitely doesn't feel like spring and it doesn't look like we'll have much of a "break" as we have all kinds of stuff scheduled this week!

Last night we went out to eat with Aaron's parents and brother before Bryan headed back home after a whole week of basketball. I can't imagine going to basketball games all day every day for a whole week but there is obviously a lot I don't quite get about the world of sports. And I am thrilled that so many people love it as much as they do because then I don't have to try to talk intelligently about something I know nothing about! I can leave those conversations to the experts...

Today Bryn and I went to Paradise Park (i.e. kid paradise and parent nightmare) with a friend a her kids. It actually was fun and the kids had a great time. It had all the usual kid attractions: ball pit, bumper cars, arcade, art area, water tables, rock wall, etc. It was pouring rain all day so it was nice to be tucked away inside in a place where there was plenty to do.

Tomorrow we are going to go paint some pottery at one of those "paint your own" places. I made Bryn a plate when she was little and almost every time she uses it we have a conversation about when I made it. It finally occured to me she might have fun painting something herself.

Wednesday we are going swimming and Thursday and firday plans are kind of up in the air at the moment, but I am sure we will come up with something. I figure if I stay out of the house all week I won't feel guilty about not cleaning it!

I am feeling rather large (can't really get up off of the floor very easily!) and my heart is still crazy, but I am hanging in there. Can't wait to meet this little guy!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Moaning and groaning

Just needed to moan and groan a bit - my heartburn is killing me! I have been waiting for the generic version of my medicine to come in to the pharmacy for days and have been trying to use Zantac in the meantime and it just isn't doing the job! Ouch! And it seems when my heartburn flares up, so does my heart. Probably just because I am more aware of strange feelings in my chest. Ah could be worse!

It has been a mellow couple of days. Aaron has been gone watching the Big 12 basketball tournament and Bryn and I have been hanging out playing on the computer and watching TV and reading books and such. I did manage to get the baby room totally cleaned out and arranged. It looks somewhat pathetic with nothing on the walls and no cute baby theme, but I figure he won't much care. I am also trying to convince Bryn we don't need to keep all 4 billion of the stuffed animals she has - needless to say cleaning out her room is not going as smoothly!

My doc appointment yesterday went fine and she said not to worry about the low potassium. I also can quit testing my blood sugars and eat whatever I want as soon as I give birth - I told Aaron to have the Cadbury mini eggs ready as soon as I get the go ahead to eat again after the surgery! I have had a few contractions, but baby hasn't even dropped yet so i am thinking nothing is going to happen before the 26th and I'll have another c-section after all.

I am currently roasting a chicken for dinner. This is monumental for me as I have pretty much sworn off cooking big chunks of poultry as I can never get them cooked completely in the amount of time they are supposed to take to cook. I have a hard and fast rule against cooking turkey for holidays and don't know what possessed me to buy a chicken (actually, yeah I do - it was cheap as dirt), so we'll see how this goes.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

The fun continues...

It has been another crazy couple of days...

Yesterday I finally went over to Labor and Delivery to let them check my heart. Everything checked out fine except my potassium and sodium levels were a little low. Not sure why or what I'll do about it, but hopefully my OB will have some insight when I see her tomorrow.

I did go see the cardiologist again today and he basically said "these things happen, especially during pregnancy" and told me to eat a banana to help with the potassium. So very helpful. I guess I should be glad they always kind of blow me off - I'll assume it means that these crazy palpitations are nothing to worry about.

Additionally I put a nice yellow racing stripe on the side of my car when I sideswiped a post at Walmart yesterday on my way to the hospital. See what happens when you drive distractedly? I was too busy worrying about whether or not I should bother to go in to notice I was getting too close to the post of the passenger side. At least the door still opens and closes and if I paint a number on the side of the van maybe I'll be able to head over to the NASCAR track and have some fun.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


It has been a frustrating couple of days around here...between our health insurance company, hospital billing issues and my students I am about ready to scream. In addition, I have been having more of my lovely heart palpitations and haven't been sleeping well. So I am pretty much going to just whine for a couple of minutes!

I received a bill from the hospital (which we shouldn't owe) for my gestational diabetes consult and called to check on it. Billing tells me that insurance paid some $75 and I owe the rest. I call the insurance company who says they have no record of a bill for that date of service and didn't pay. So when I call the hospital back, they tell me that insurance didn't pay, but that I paid $75 (which I didn't) and that when they contacted the insurance company they were told I wasn't a member. So I call the insurance company who assures me I am a member, but then proceeds to tell me that my OB doc is not a contracting provider and unless my OB care is precertified I am not going to be covered anyway. At which point I freak out because I already checked all of this out before our insurance was changed and call the doctors office and pre-certification and everyone else under the sun. Turns out the person I talked to was clueless on how to look up participating providers in her own computer system. Gotta love incompetence. And the hospital thing still isn't resolved - I gave up temporarily. Yes, I was defeated by the system.

Then I check in on my online classes this morning to find an email from a student who I had given a zero on an assignment because it was late and she proceeds to tell me I have been mean and not helpful and she should be allowed to make up all the work (including 2 tests) she missed because her computer crashed (for many weeks evidently). Never mind that she never contacted me about any problems. And obviously I must be unaware that there is a computer shortage in this country and no possible way she could ever find a computer to use anywhere but at her house. And never mind that all of my policies about logging in to class and turning in work and contacting me if there are problems are CLEARLY stated within the class info. I am just a mean and horrible person out to keep all of my students from doing well in my classes just because I like to see them fail and I personally love the aggravation of dealing with unhappy people. You have learned something new about me.

And additionally I am throwing PVCs like crazy and it is about to drive me crazy. I know that in theory it is "normal" for my heart to do this and I have obviously survived it so far, but it is disconcerting to be skipping multiple beats per minute. I finally called the doc yesterday afternoon after 4 days of craziness and was told to go to Labor and Delivery if it picks up or continues at the rate it has been going. So far today it hasn't been too bad and since these "episodes" usually last 3 to 4 days it is probably just about over. One can hope, anyway. And I am sure my current aggravation level is doing a lot to help calm my heart down.

So I can't vent and not find some silver lining...

All looked well at my latest OB appointment and we're counting down the days until the 26th.

The girls at Bunco had a little (totally unexpected since I just started playing) shower for me last night and I got some cute outfits and towels and a bunch of diapers and stuff.

Elmer has only pooped on the floor 4 times in the last week instead of every single time he needed to go (never mind that he hadn't gone in the house in a month prior).

Bryn has Spring Break starting on Thursday and we are going to do some fun stuff before her baby brother shows up. We only have swimming and a trip to T-Rex restaurant on the agenda so far, but should be able to come up with some other good things to do!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Same old...

We survived our childbirth class today and actually had a pretty good time. we did skip out a little early since most of the info likely won't pertain to us since I have a c-section scheduled. We did get the hospital tour and I got some info regarding options for anesthesia and pain management and what will happen after surgery (the gritchy nurse I met with for my pre-care stuff told me I had no options - not a good approach with a hormonal, pregnant control freak!).

Aaron's parents and brother came in yesterday and hung out with us last night and then babysat Bryn today. They are going to spend the entire week at the Big 12 basketball tournament. Sounds like pure misery to me, but is heaven for those that love basketball as much as they do!

Not much on tap this week...just Bunco tomorrow night and the last of the room and basement organizing (hopefully). Bryn will be off of school Thursday, Friday and all of next week so I am hoping she and I can do some fun stuff before baby comes.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Book Review - YA Challenge

I can't figure out where to post links to reviews for Joy's YA Challenge, but here is the reiview anyway...

Bryn and I read The Tale of Despereaux by Kate Dicamillo (actually I read and Bryn listened). This is the second book of hers I have read and I can't quite decide how I feel about her books. I really like them, but they have a sort of sad and deep component to them that makes them different from many of the other YA books I have read.

This book tells the story of an unusually small mouse, a beautiful princess, a hard-hearted rat and a servant girl. When the mouse, Despereaux, is sent to the castle dungeon for talking to the princess (that he has fallen in love with) the tale begins to unwind. Despereaux must find the strength within himself to save all of them from a dark fate and a life without soup (you'll just have to read the book to find out what the heck that means!). Armed with a needle and some thread, Despereaux does save the day in the end and everyone learns a little about love, life and forgiveness.

Book Review - What's in a Name Challenge

I finished my pick for a book with an animal in the title for Annie's What's in a Name Challenge. I read the Last Night at the Lobster by Stuart O'Nan.

This book takes place during that last day in the life of a Red Lobster restaurant. Due to poor numbers and low profit, headquarters is closing the restaurant and the manager, Manny, must hold things together for one more day. With some employees not showing up, others walking out early, a blizzard keeping most customers away and a bus full of food-poisoned tourists looking for a bathroom, Manny faces an interesting last shift. Stuart O'Nan does a great job of capturing the mixed emotions of being a working class grunt at the mercy of a corporation and the pride in a job well done. For anyone who has ever worked in a restaurant, the familiarity of rules and regulations, co-worker relationships, food prep and customers that don't tip is laugh-out-loud funny.

This was a good (and pretty short) book that was both inspiring and sad. As the doors close for the last time and the employees walk away to find somewhere to start over, I couldn't help but feel strangely sorry for the fictional characters that represent so many in the real world.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008


Things are still pretty mellow here...we made it through our busy weekend and I cooked all day yesterday so I could stash some meals in the freezer. As a result, I have done NOTHING today. I have just been hanging out on the couch with Elmer and accomplished nothing. I am hoping for a burst of energy here soon, but I don't see it happening. Not that there isn't stuff I need to get done (washing clothes, hauling more stuff to the basement, cooking more meals, organizing Bryn's room, a million other miscellaneous little things), but I think I'll just lay on the couch and read something by Janet Evanovich instead (BTW, if you haven't read her Stephanie Plum series, it is a little raunchy, but is laugh out loud funny!).

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Exciting times...

We had a big week here...

Bryn's birthday was Thursday - hard to believe she is 6! We didn't do a whole lot on the actual day. I sent cupcakes to school and Aaron, Bryn and I went out to dinner. She opened presents and we sent her to bed before she got to play with much since it was so late, but she has definitely made up the playtime since! Her birthday party is today and we have somewhere between 15 and 25 kids coming (nobody RSVPs these days!), so it should be an adventure. Thank goodness we are doing it at the gymnastics academy and they take care of all of it - we just bring cake, plates, cups and the checkbook. Bryn wanted a "puppy" party, so I have puppy themed goodie bags to stuff before 3 pm, but I think I can get it done. And we managed to talk her into having the kids bring items to donate to the animal shelter rather than gifts - I thought 20+ gifts would be a bit extreme!

The playhouse is coming along very nicely...Really all that is left is the wiring and finishing the inside walls. Bryn will be lucky if she gets to play in it friends and I are thinking it would be quite a nice mommy retreat...

Aaron's ankle is healing pretty well, but it still looks pretty nasty...

And just in case some of you are worried that we will make it through life without attending a childbirth class, we were able to reschedule for next Sunday. we can't wait for our 7 1/2 hours of instruction...

Lastly, if you're inclined to add someone else to your prayer list, Memaw (my step-grandmother) went to the doc for a follow up scan and they found a couple suspicious looking lymph nodes. It is a setback after having a clear scan last time and getting to feeling good after the last round of chemo and radiation, but she remains positive and ready to take what comes.