Thursday, June 27, 2013

It's 2013...

...and I have 2 insanely amazing and gorgeous baby girls.
Sienna Sofia is going to be 5 in one week and Gabriella Maria will be 2 in three months.
It is so incredibly hard to believe how quickly they have grown.
Here are some pictures of my loves:

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

3 Years?!

I cannot believe it has been three years since I have posted here!!

So much time gone by, so many updates. Where to even begin?

First and foremost, Sienna is doing wonderfully. My baby turned three on the fourth of July. THREE! I can't believe how quickly time is passing us by. Here is a picture of my Nugget:

And in other fabulous news:

That's right! We are expecting again! I am due in 5 weeks with another precious baby girl.

I will try and provide some updates prior to her birth. In the meantime, here are a few more pictures of Sienna:

Saturday, September 20, 2008


I am a very happy mommy!

Looky what Norman bought for Sienna and me today!!!!!

The COMPLETE Stokke Xplory!

We are so chic!

Seriously I am loving this new pram.

A proper update to follow soon...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Things We Learn Along The Way

Baby and Daddy are asleep and I am wide awake so I find myself with some ME TIME!

Our Nugget is doing well even though her GERD is such a royal pain. We feel so bad for her. Honestly there is not much we can do but try and keep her as comfortable as possible and hope she outgrows it soon. She cries a lot because of it and it makes things very complicated - as if having a baby isn't already complicated enough as it is. Almost every feeding is an ordeal and taking her out is usually risky business - though she usually does well out because she tends to sleep the entire time, thus she eats less. At the end of the day, our lives are forever changed and despite the difficulties, I wouldn't have it any other way.

That being said, here are some things I would like to share with you about GERD babies (and I suppose all babies in general), things they don't teach you in your prenatal classes. Trust me, you will thank me later:

1. When preparing formula, warm the water first, THEN add the powder - and for the love of God, anticipate your baby's need to feed. I never realized how loud a 2 month old could shriek

2. Drop Mylicon directly into your baby's bottle to eliminate all foam and bubbles

3. DO NOT burp your GERD baby in between ounces - unless you are wearing a poncho while you feed your little one. Speaking of which, invest in at least 20 really great quality bibs and burp cloths

4. Possibly even more important than keeping your baby upright for 30 minutes after she eats is not moving her much at all after she has started to feed. This means a commitment on your part to not trade her off to your partner, grandma and so on

5. Whoever is feeding the baby rules the universe (Can you get me: the remote, water, make it cooler, turn on the light, turn off the fan...?)

6. Be prepared to do a full load of baby laundry every 4 days

7. Be prepared to explain to people why you put the bib on your baby AFTER she finishes eating

8. Always change your baby before her feedings - even non-GERD babies always spit up during and after being changed, this I find at least minimizes the amount expelled

9. Before you change your baby have her new diaper ready to go - NEVER LEAVE HER PRIVATES EXPOSED!! Otherwise you will have pee/poop all over your hands, face, changing table, changing pad, your pretty changing pad cover, etc.

10. Save your money, as well as time and aggravation - do not buy button-up footsie sleepers. What a nightmare! Middle of the night feedings are difficult to say the least. I can hardly button the 3 buttons of a regular onesie after a 4AM diaper change, let alone the 6-8 buttons of a footsie sleeper. Zipper sleepers are the way to go

11. Carry a few extra onesies and an extra shirt for yourself in your diaper bag

12. As for the diaper bag itself - buy it for function, not looks. Believe me on this one! You want to be able to access your things in a pinch

13. Start your babe on a bedtime routine ASAP. Ours is a warm bath at 9PM followed by a warm bottle while being rocked to sleep by lullabies. Works like a charm

14. Wearable blankets rock

15. So do swaddle blankets


16. Accept help! This is the hardest part for me - I know how hard it can be to handle my Nugget because of her GERD. But the truth is, grandma and grandpa are extremely capable to handle her if we need a break

Now take a look at how lucky I am :)

Thursday, September 4, 2008

2 Months Old Today!

Where has the time gone?

I honestly do not even know where to begin. I have a million thoughts I just want to spill out but they are so jumbled up in my brain that I...just don't know where to begin!

If I had to describe the last 2 months in a few words I'd have to say: UNBELIEVABLY WONDERFUL YET UNBELIEVABLY DIFFICULT.
I had no idea what having Nugget would be like. I knew it would be hard (or so everyone said), I just had no freaking idea.

My daughter is so amazing; now I know all mommys think their children are the cutest in the world - but truly, mine is. She is so adorable. She is beyond cute. She is a gerber baby.


I will try to hilight the last few months in a nice and concise post, but it's gonna be hard. I need to be better at posting regularly.

Nugget was a breast fed baby - initially. She wanted to nurse 24x7, even as a teeny weeny newborn. She needed booby constantly. And I mean constantly. Norman couldn't hold her. I could barely even pull her off long enough for a trip to the potty, much less a shower. She wasn't sleeping either. So neither were we...we couldn't leave the house, I couldn't eat, I couldn't do anything. She as on my breast constantly. No breaks. I would pull her off and she'd scream her head off. I can't even begin to explain it. She wouldn't take a pacifier either. This went on for a full 5 weeks. I was so concerned that she wasn't getting enough to eat. But she was because she was gaining weight, albeit very slowly. And I honestly do not have a clue how she was gaining weight because she was spiting up EVERYTHING she ate. Nightmarish. She was like the girl from The Exorcist. Anyhow, It got to the point where I had to start supplementing with formula because I just simply could not keep up. I cried the day I gave her her first bottle. I truly never imagined I would ever feed my baby formula. But her doctor told me to not be a hero and I was so thankful she was so supportive. She is the best doctor ever.

The spit up and colic (did I not mention she had colic? She had her first colic episode on our last night at the hospital) got so bad that we took her to the ER when she was a mere 9 days old. Her daddy and I cried like babies that entire night. The brutality. They gave her a catheter, drew blood from her tiny veins and kept a port in - just in case they needed more blood later, took X-rays, an ultrasound...only to tell us she has severe infant GERD. They gave us Zantac and sent us on our way.

The long and short of it is that the breastfeeding was getting us nowhere. She was tossing everything - projectile vomiting, and I was desperate to find food that my baby could tolerate since my boobies weren't cutting it. The doctor recommended a hypoallergenic formula and so we tried it when she was 5 weeks old. It smelled gross but seemed to do the trick...for a while. She then started getting sick again and the colic was a nightmare. I switched to fancy shmancy bottles and the doctor took her off the Zantac (since it seemed to make her worse) and put her on Prevacid. She hated the Prevacid. She hated the formula. She hated my boobie milk. She hated EVERYTHING. She was sooooo cranky. She never smiled, she was always mean mugging Norman and me. I was so sad, I would DREAD feeding time. I would dread it every second of the day. I would feed her, she would throw it all up, cry, scream, fuss, arch her back, scream, cry, scream, etc, etc, right up until the next feeding. She would never sleep because she was always hungry. Oh my God I can hardly write this. It's making my blood curl just remembering those God awful days.

Once I officially decided to stop breastfeeding her (the guilt was awful - especially since everywhere I searched online would practically degrade women for not breastfeeding. Norman spent a good 2 weeks trying to get me to stop thinking about the panel of faceless judges I swore were taking notes on how bad of a mother I was), we decided to get her off the expensive hypoallergenic stuff and find something that actually worked. We tried EVERYTHING. At the end of the day the only thing she could tolerate was the cheapest formula on the market with no added DHA or ARA. Go figure.

Her GERD got so much better after that. The doctor prescribed Carafate but we have decided to not give her any medicine at all. Oh, and our sleepless nights of taking turns holding her upright (yes we did that for weeks) ended the day we bought the amazing Amby Baby. I swear by this thing. Google it and take a look. It is amazing. That and the Snuggle Nest we bought to put her to sleep on her belly in bed with us. GERD babies love tummy time and love to be on their bellies. Poor thing. But she is slowly making progress. She has her good and bad days - she still gets reflux but it is considerably less. She is getting silent reflux more now, which is worse apparently because the acids come up and then she will instinctively swallow it back down. She was 11.15 lbs at her 2 month appointment, which brings her up to the 50th percentile, yeah! She is actually sleeping through the night now, she goes to bed at around 11PM and is up just before 6AM for her feeding. Then she wants to party all day long :) Which is of course fine by me since it means she sleeps better at night. Though it is hard since I am trying to work from home and all.

She is happy now. She smiles and loves to be in her crib (even though she doesn't sleep in it) looking at her pretty new mobile. She loves to be out, especially the mall. She's already a fashionista! And she is so sweet. My cousin Allie thinks she is an old soul. And Norman? He is head over heels ga-ga over her. He is so overprotective, it's the sweetest thing ever. His love for her makes me love him more than ever - which I didn't think was possible since I have always loved him so much.

But I have never in my entire life known a love like this. It is so overwhelming. It is so all consuming. Sienna is the best thing that has ever happened to me. She has already taught me so much about myself. She has made me a stronger person, a better person. She is perfection. I look forward to every day with her.

She completes me.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Labor Story

Life has been a whirlwind! Nugget is doing great, Norm and I are exhausted because she honestly doesn't sleep. But we could not be happier. More about all of that later...I want to document the labor process before I forget. I am already losing my memory of it.

Here goes...

I hadn't been feeling very peachy for the few days leading up to my 39 week OB visit. It actually went beyond the bad contractions. I wasn't sleeping at all because of the belly pain and vaginal and rectal pressure and Norman was staying up with me all night since the beginning of July. He decided to begin his leave on July 2. My 39 week OB visit was on Thursday, July 3. Norman drove me over to the doctor early that morning and I was seeing fireflies - you know, those odd little lights you sometimes get in your line of sight when you are nauseated. Once we got there, I was weighed and peed in the cup as usual. When my BP was taken it was high, 150/90. My doctor checked my reflexes and they were a bit more jumpy than normal. My doctor told me that I had spilled protein in my urine, and that, combined with the elevated BP, hyper reflexes and fireflies, indicated preeclampsia. He called the hospital and notified them I would be heading over for induction and that if all progressed normally that he would come to the hospital and rupture my membranes at lunch time.


I couldn't even believe it. Honestly.

I got my papers from the nurse and Norman and I were off. When we pulled into the hospital parking lot I started cry. I was so overwhelmed with emotion. I couldn't believe I would be meeting our daughter in a very short while.

We checked into the hospital and we were taken straight to a L&D room. As soon as I was connected to the monitors, Norman went home to pick up our bags and infant car seat. After my intake, I was hooked up to the IV and was given Penicillin for Group B Strep (I was told I was negative but turns out I was actually positive). I was then checked for dilation and was only 1CM and my cervix was posterior. The induction began at 11AM: Cytotec tablets were inserted and I was on bed rest for 2 hours while we waited for the medicine to start dilating me.

Norman got back at around 1PM and brought my mom with him. I was laying on my left side and Nugget's heartrate dropped to 80. Those L&D beds are so uncomfortable as it is, now I had to be on my right side only. I was so uncomfortable and panicked at this point, staring at the baby's heartrate monitor the rest of the night. My dad came a short while later. By this time, my contractions were about 5 minutes apart. My doctor came to check on me shortly thereafter and I was still only 1CM dilated. He couldn't break my water since I wasn't making progress. We all thought that since my cervix was very ripe my induction would progress rapidly. This was not the case. My doctor said he would come back at the end of the workday to check on me.

Things didn't start getting very painful until about 4PM. I was contracting strong and I was so uncomfortable. The nurse shift changed and my new nurse, Joanie, who was so awesome during the whole ordeal, told me that as soon as I needed pain medicine she would call the doctor. I love her so much I have to remember to send her flowers or something.

I was able to hold out on the pain meds until my doctor came back to see me at about 8PM. I was checked and again and was only TWO CM DILATED. Bad in terms of progress. If it wasn't for Joanie, my doctor would have performed a C-section at that time. She asked him to give me some more time to progress and he agreed. I got Nubain. It made me giggly and giddy and it helped a little bit. I still felt the contractions and I was in pain, moaning through the contractions. At some point I managed to doze off and when I woke up it was about 11PM. I was in so much pain at this point. I mean really bad contractions. What was going on? Turns out that while I was sleeping, Joanie started me on a Pitocin drip. Holy shit I was shocked at how intense the Pitocin made my contractions. Turns out the Pitocin causes much more intense contractions than natural contractions. At some point I started getting the shakes and they didn't stop until the day after I delivered. My dad left to get some sleep.

I got my epidural at about 2AM and managed to stop shaking long enough for the needle to go in my back. Joanie inserted a catheter shortly thereafter. I was given an oxygen mask and almost passed out because it was recycling my CO2 but we'll forgive Joanie for that lol. I couldn't sleep at all. I was afraid I would die. Literally. I felt so drowsy and my pressure was so low alarms were sounding. My doctor called and asked Joanie to check me for dilation. I wasn't even 3CM yet. I had been laboring for 15 hours at this point.

My doctor decided to perform the C-section right away. I couldn't believe I was haing a C-Section. It wasn't supposed to happen this way. I was prepped and Norman was given scrubs. My doctor was at the hospital in less than 45 minutes. My dad came back to be there for the birth. I was wheeled into the operating room and was shaking so much I thought I would roll off the table.

The surgery began and I heard them say "Dad's in the bathroom" and I remember thinking Norman is in the bathroom? I couldn't comprehend. Norman finally came in and sat by my head. He had a mask over his mouth and he was trying to talk to me and I couldn't hear. I was so pumped with morphine and drugs I actually passed out. I woke up when I heard the baby cry. I heard My doctor say Nugget's Apgar was a 9. I was struggling to keep my eyes open. Norman came to me to show me the baby's feet prints. Then they finally brought me my Nugget and she was crying and so beautiful and when they put her near my head I told her I loved her and kissed her and she stopped crying briefly. My heart just melted and my adrenaline kicked in and I was DESPERATE to get off the table to hold my baby. Everyone in the OR said she was the cutest baby ever. It seemed to take forever for them to be finished with me. The tugging and pulling was an odd sensation. Norman had gone with the baby to the nursery. I was finally wheeled to triage and Norman came to me to say the baby was perfect and adorable and ready to eat. He went off to take my parents to the nursery and I waited for them to bring the baby to me. They finally did and it was so surreal. Sienna is AMAZING. So beautiful and perfect and lovely and delicate and tiny. She latched on to my breast right away and ate like a pro. They took her back to the nursery and I told Norman to follow her so I stayed in triage alone drifting in and out of sleep. Norman came back to tell me my parents were going home for a shower and breakfast and would be back later.

After what seemed like forever, I was wheeled to my recovery room which is where we stayed for the next 3 days. Joanie situated me and they finally brought Nugget to us. She had her first bowel movement shortly thereafter and Norman was a champ and a natural. My C-Section was unplanned and I was so emotional because honestly I wanted to get up and help change her diaper and carry her but I couldn't. It was hard to adjust to the idea that Norman had to not only take care of me but also the baby. I felt helpless. But the baby was born at 3:33AM on the 4th and I was up and walking by 6PM that same evening. My recovery, albeit painful, was thankfully very smooth and wonderful thanks to Norman, my parents and the AMAZING nurses at the hospital.

I celebrated my birthday at the hospital on Saturday.

Nugget is the most perfect gift I have ever received.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Welcome Sienna Sofia!

Our Nugget arrived on July 4 at 3:33AM.

She weighed 6lbs 9oz, 18 in.

We are so in love.