Thursday, September 21, 2017

Clark's Birth Story

It's been two weeks since Clark has graced us with his presence!! It feels like forever since he's been with us and yet I'm still in shock that he's here (I can't be the only mom who feels this way, no?) So on to the birth story!

I haven't been shy about voicing my desire to have Clark on September 4th so he could match his sisters (February 4th and July 4th, respectively.) So when Labor Day Monday came and went, I was semi depressed. And bless Kinsey's heart as she told me ever so gently, "Mom, any day Baby Brother is born will be a special day." And she was right!

Tuesday the 5th was a hot and muggy day and we had just got home from picking Kinsey up from school when I was squatting down to pick something up from the ground when I felt/heard a strange bubbling sound right at the top of my stomach and essentially where Clark's bum would be pointing straight up into my face and FREAKED OUT; did he just poop meconium?!?! I called my doctor's office ASAP because googling "can you hear baby poop in uterus" comes with mixed results lol. Not wanting to take any chances the receptionist had me come in and being super dramatic, I brought my hospital bag along too.

Well, baby was just fine and it was most likely my own tummy making weird noises (go figure) so I was sent home but with the promise of a membrane strip at my appointment the next day.

Wednesday's appointment was at 11a and I did indeed get my strip and was sent on my merry way. Brian was also off from work so we took Brielana to Target for some last minute baby items and then we picked up Kinsey from school. (In an interesting parallel, a walk around Target was also had after Brielana's membrane stripe 3 years prior ;) We had In-N-Out as a special lunch request from the girls and I fully imagined it as my "last meal".

Occasionally I had some mild cramping throughout the rest of the afternoon/ evening but nothing that screamed "labor" so I went to bed p-r-a-y-i-n-g I'd wake up with a baby in my arms.

At 11:30a I woke up to pee and to possible contractions (because I'm never sure at first, am I the only one?!) and tried laying back down. Well, that was horrid so I tried some stretching and when they didn't lesson, I figured timing them would be a good idea. And because "laboring time" moves differently then regular time it was already 12:30a when I decided to start timing. Contractions were clocking in every 1-2 minutes and lasted for 1 minute. Suffice it to say I called my doctor around 12:45a and he told me to call the hospital and the show began!

I woke up Brian, woke up my mom, who was to watch the girls and then jammed it to the car as Brian said, "don't mess around you need to get your epidural." Love that man.

The drive to the hospital was about 8 minutes with no cars in sight and all green lights (praise the Lord.) We arrived about five minutes after one in the morning.
Clark's Birth Story
We made it to check in and I was taken to a triage room (a first) to be monitored pre-admission as it was a busy night to have babies! On the way in we passed a couple who were sent home and then we were told later someone gave birth in the hallway behind an erect curtain (yikes!)

I was 4cm dilated when I was first checked and had my blood drawn for lab work pre-epidural, which I had requested as soon as the door shut behind me haha. Luckily the anesthesiologist was right down the hall and was informed of his assistance. Laurie the nurse read from my chart that I had quick labors so we walked across the hall to the birthing suite and by then it was like 1:30a and I had already progressed to 5cm in that short half hour.
Clark's Birth Story
My doctor came in shortly after and even though I didn't have a full bag of IV fluids, he said I could get the epidural in now because "as much fun as labor is, let's get the show on the road!" This is another reason why I adore my doctor. 

I got to watch the room get set up with birthing materials and that was fascinating. And then my Bestie of the morning arrived, the anesthesiologist. He made some jokes and I just was relieved I made it before the point of no pain meds!
Clark's Birth Story
After the epidural because, smiling ;)
This epidural was not my favorite but it was better than Brielana's so it was middle grade lol. It felt like it took forever to get inserted, and longer to take affect, and then my whole right leg went numb, so I was basically useless when it came to maneuvering.

My water was broke around 2:45a and then my doctor left. 

Laurie the nurse mentioned something about an "anomaly" on the baby monitor when another nurse came in saying my doctor didn't like the look of it and ordered a amnio-transfusion to which I was like, "what's going on?"  **An amnio-transfusion is basically an IV for the baby as my fluid levels were lower and it was causing slight distress on Clark. But when she went to put in the catheter thing his head was in the way and there was no room to maneuver it in. (So at this point I was basically a 9cm.)

We tried changing my laying position from back to left side but I started to get uncomfortable and asked to roll onto my right side but he liked that even less, so I was rolled back over to my left.

And then it seems everything happened at once. Nurses started to come into the room and I felt Clark's head just drop into the birth canal (which felt like I'd imagine how a car shifts gears, ku-clunk) and a doctor I've never seen before asks if its ok if she steps in to deliver.
I get my legs into the stirrups and getting ready to push when my doctor walks in (relief!) and then I have an oxygen mask placed over my face. In that moment I almost panic, because WTH?! I've never had that happen before but then I'm pushing and Clark is out after three.  **Anyone else feel like they don't know how to push out a baby?! I've done it three times and still feel like I have no clue how that works? 

Incidentally, I have a second degree tear and a labial tear(?) so stitches were needed but it hasn't bothered me at all, so Ill take it!
Clark's Birth Story
Still in the mask I heard Clark cry but didn't get to see Brian cut his umbilical cord before a nurse asks if I got him and I'm holding our son! Clark came out and greeted the world by pooping and then peed on me, welcome to the boy mom club, indeed!

Brian had to fill me in on some goings on since I had that oxygen mask on but apparently, Clark came out with his cord wrapped around his neck and body so he was slightly blue (and why the extra oxygen was administered to me). He passed his Apgar and nothing is amiss, but talk about an entrance! 
Clark's Birth Story
He was born at 3:31a on Thursday, September 7th after about 2.5 hours of labor. He weighed 8.11 (a pound more than Kinsey and Brielana) and measured 20.5 inches (an inch and a half longer than B and an inch longer than K.) His hair was dark and wavy(!!!) and it pains me that I didn't take a picture of it as it has since straightened out. I'm hoping once he has a full bath the wave will return.

He is a wonderful mix of his sisters (Kinsey's eyes and chin and Brielana's nose and cheeks) and has the longest, skinniest toes from who knows what relative lol. He halfheartedly nursed those first few hours but it was just such a  joy to finally hold him in my arms. He is such a squish!
Clark's Birth Story
Brian went to pick up the girls around 8a and they were so sweet when they came into the room! I swear my heart ruptured seeing them all together. Kinsey wanted to hold Clark right away and Brielana couldn't pet him enough. Big old fail for not remembering to have my mom take a family picture but in my defense, I was still a little drugged haha.
Clark's Birth Story
We spent the day watching Peter Pan and The Peanuts Movie and then Brian took them home and Clark and I were solo for the night. 
Clark's Birth Story
He passed all his tests and received his vaccines and I wisely took a few naps throughout the day as I needed them; this boy cried for like two hours from 2-4a and it was exhausting! I've never experienced that before! Luckily Brian came to the hospital bright and early around 5a and I got to nap and then shower.
Clark's Birth Story
We were discharged around 11a and got to bring our squish home! The girls had decorated the front door with my mom and it was the sweetest welcome. Being a family of five is nothing short of a blessing.
Clark's Birth Story
Thank you all for the warm well-wishes and congratulations! It has been more than I could have asked for or deserve, this mama definitely feels loved!


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Monday, September 18, 2017

He's Here!

He's Here!
Born bright and early at 3:31a on Thursday, September 7th. 
Weighing 8 pounds 11 ounces measuring at 20.5 inches with a head of wavy dark hair.
He's Here!
We are so blessed to welcome you home, little one.

Birth story coming soon

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Monday, September 4, 2017

Lactogenic overnight oats for nursing mothers

The official countdown is on- I have less than a week (let that soak in for a minute!!!) before Clark joins our family! I am equal parts ecstatic and ready and nervous and preparing all the things. Breastfeeding is always my number one priority after giving birth (I have already spent 3.5+ years of my 6.5 years of motherhood dedicated to this expression of love!) and am gearing up for another two years of nourishing our son.

Since morning times are the most hectic in my household and we all know breakfast is the most important meal of the day, I wanted to focus on making that rush time less stressful by having an easy go-to meal; and these lactogenic overnight oats are just the answer!

Not only are they easy to prepare, just throw everything into a mason jar, you prep them the night before and let the fridge do its magic and the oats soften and the flavors mingle. Even better part? Use the same mason jar to heat and eat from! This can't be easier.  Bonus: all the ingredients in this recipe help produce/sustain your milk production!
Lactogenic Overnight Oats
Ingredients:
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1 fresh or 2-3 dried apricots, diced
1 TBSP honey (a natural sweetener)
1 TBSP flaxseeds, optional
1/2 cup almondmilk or more depending on how thick/thin you like your oatmeal

Layer all the dry ingredients and then top off with almondmilk. Cover and shake to incorporate all the ingredients. Place in fridge overnight and heat in microwave the next morning. +Due to the variances in all microwaves I would say start at 30 seconds and check for 'doneness'. My microwave has low wattage so it takes about 1 minute to heat to my likeness. Enjoy!

*Oats are a great source of iron, calcuim and fiber. (source)
*Almonds and cashews are believed to boost breastmilk production. (source)
*Apricots are high in fiber, Vitamins A, C, potassium and calcium. (source)
*Flaxseed has phytoestrogens that can influence breast milk production and also contains essential fatty acids. (source)

This post was first seen on The Vintage Honey Shop blog.

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Thursday, August 31, 2017

Naming our Son {Baby #3}

If this baby boy had been born 6.5 years ago he would have had a very different name. And isn't that funny? How much our preferences change? Before we found out that Kinsey was a girl we had our boy name settled: Braylen Gary- a "B" name to honor Brian and Gary after my papa. 
Naming our Son {Baby #3}
We can't really put our finger on why we won't be using that name now it just isn't our ideal son's name so without further ado: 

CLARK AUSTEN

will be oh so shortly joining our family!

"Clark" fulfills a few favorites. Brian's love for Superman lore and my adoration for surnames as first names (and 2/3 of our kids now boast them.)

"Austen" has always been a name I've liked. In Kindergarten a boy had that name and though I didn't give a hoot about that boy, his name always resonated with me. 
A couple of friends, Courtney and Stephanie actually asked if this was a homage to Jane Austen and yes it is, but only in spelling :) #bookloverforlife

For the longest time we were torn between order- Austen Clark or Clark Austen but then I had a dream (as always haha) that someone yelled "Clark" and I thought, "that's my son's name." And that was that.

So there you have all the nitty gritty (and maybe a touch of fan boy/girl) details of how we named our son!
Naming our Son {Baby #3}

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