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Thursday, November 27, 2014

London's One Year Pics

Sadly this is the last of our sessions with our photographer (we paid for a "baby's first year" package while I was preg) until we can afford her again lol.
She has been so so good.
We got an extremely good deal on the package that we did, and now she is getting more and more clients so her prices are reflecting that =(

But anyway, We had London's one year old pics done at Wheeler Farm. London gets super hesitant and cautious when that big black camera is in her face so it is really hard to get smiles out of her!
little stinker ;)

We did get a few, but they all turned out so good, smiles or not!
That's how good our photographer is! And how cute our baby is ;)

Since London's Birthday is close to Halloween, we also had some done in her costume that aunt Krissie let us borrow!

We LOVE this little girl.
Just cant get enough!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Family Pics

Since I have not blogged much in the last year, I have some things I want to catch up on

I wanted to make sure that I documented our family pics which we had done in July when London was 8 months old
(taken at Liberty Park by Harlowmoon Photography)

 I just LOVE this little family of mine.

Look at that little face!

Friday, October 17, 2014

London's First Birthday!

I can't believe my little baby is ONE!!
Where has the time gone!
Sadly, I have only blogged a few times in that whole year! 
I have however, rededicated myself this this little space because I miss it, and I love going back through to read old posts!
Instagram has certainly changed the blogging world, that's for sure.

We had a sweet little party for London's birthday. 
Big, huge, over the top birthday parties are THE THING right now, 
especially in the blogging/creative world. 
I LOVE throwing/decorating a good party. It is a huge creative outlet for me, and I enjoy it immensely. 
Buuuuut, I didn't want to make this party a huge blowout for a few reasons.

First of all, if you do a huge party, how do you keep that up year after year? 
Especially when more kids start entering the mix and you are now throwing big birthday bashes multiple times a year!?
They also get expensive, and quick!

So I decided to keep things fairly simple and minimal, but still got to use my creative side for small things like decorations and dessert. Here are a few pictures of what I did, starting with the invitation.

To get my creative juices flowing, I decided to make letter cookies spelling her name for the dessert. 
This was SOOOOO much fun! I definitely want to make this a tradition for birthdays, and even other holidays! I am excited to decorate fun Christmas sugar cookies!
I did some research and watched a bunch of tutorials on cookie decorating and made a trip to
 Sur Le Table for some cookie cutters and gel food coloring (this is KEY!)

The process was a mess, but they turned out just how I imagined them!

The other thing that I did for the party was some decorations in the kitchen above the food table.
I just cut different shapes of paper and sewed them into a garland on my sewing machine. 
I also quickly designed a happy birthday poster with a chalkboard look and had 2 pictures of her printed in 18" x 24"  
 I thought it was a fun little touch to have a picture of her as a newborn and a current picture. 

 For her cake, I had a local bakery make a small smash cake.
White with black polka dots and a small pink heart.
I purchased a small gold "1" balloon and added some sweet pink ribbons to it for the cake topper.

She devoured that thing with a nice little sugar rush to follow!

She opened presents like a champ, pulling things out of bags, ripping paper off boxes, and dancing to the little music box that her nana gave her.  It was just the cutest thing ever!

She was surrounded by happiness and love and it was so fun to watch her experience her first birthday!
I can't wait to celebrate years of her sweet little life.

Friday, May 16, 2014

London's Hospital Stay (Jaundice)

We chose to do our birth at a birth center for many reasons, one of which was that I did not want to stay in a hospital. I really DO NOT like hospitals. I am not comfortable in hospitals. 
Regardless of my near perfect birth center birth, and my want/need to avoid the hospital we managed to end up in the hospital a few days later anyways. 
We were home from the birth center like 6 hours after I had London! It was so nice! But that was short lived because she started showing signs of jaundice. 
Here is how it all went down...

We got home Saturday around noon from having London. We had the siblings filter in there after for visits and to meet our new babe. We spent the day Saturday and everything was just great. I was feeling great, and we were just soaking up having our new baby finally here!
Sunday came and I noticed she looked a little yellow, but nothing too serious. That evening I asked Krissie (as well as the midwives at her 2 day check up on Monday) if she thought she looked a little yellow (I was second guessing my judgement because of all the hours I spent just staring at her =) maybe I was just making this up!) They all thought she looked a bit yellow as well so I watched her that night and the next day to see if it got any worse. 
It did. 
We kept her in the sun to see if that would help.

I was feeling like it was getting worse, but again was second guessing my judgement. I was having a hard time separating the thoughts of "im just a paranoid new mom" from "trust your instincts." It was a stressful day (monday) battling those two thoughts so on Tues I ended up calling her Dr. Who happened to be out of town at the time.
They told me that I could get into the on call Dr. on Wed but my gut was telling me not to wait so we started calling around to different insta cares and found that they do not do billi checks there.
We ended up at primary childrens emergency room. 
Definitely not the place I thought I would be spending the day with my 3 day old baby!
They started the standard procedures with her and checked her blood pressure, blood count and billi.

Her billi was high and she was also pretty dehydrated (from nursing struggles, that will be a post all in itself). 
So they let us know that we would be spending the night there. They said that her levels were at 16.7 and that they don't allow you to leave if it is over 14. 
Finally I felt justified in my feelings and bringing her to the ER. I was happy to feel that my instincts were right on and that she was in some need of medical care. It's hard when you have a brand new baby and trying to figure out what she needs and how to take care of her, but this just goes to show that we have mothers instinct from day one. 

She was a little trooper. Hardly even crying through all the pokes and prods and getting an IV. I think that is what kept me calm through all this, is that she didn't seem too distressed at all. 
Thank heavens. I can't imagine how it would have been sitting in there with my newborn baby screaming in pain or discomfort!

They moved us over to another unit and got her all hooked up to a a heart monitor and oxygen monitor and put her in a billi bed. 
It was so sad to see her all hooked up and her little eyes covered by the protective little glasses she had to wear.

And here is how we spent the night. Brock stayed on the floor and I got the awesome tiny pleather couch.

It was a rough night. I woke up to nurse her every 2 hours and each time would have to call in a nurse to come un hook her and hook her back up. In between that and the nurse coming in to check on her and the worry of having my baby in the hospital (and the cost we would face), there wasn't much sleeping going on on my end.
A little about the nursing sitch....The morning we were admitted into the hospital my milk had come in. By that night in the hospital, it was effected drastically. The stress reduced my supply dramatically which made for even more nursing struggles than I was already having up to that point. 
By the time the morning came I was pumping after each nursing session to try and get more milk and had more than one person/nurse offer up formula (which was devastating to me at the time). This made the situation even harder because I was NOT about to give my baby formula.
(more on that in a future post)
By 10 the next morning her billi had finally lowered to 13 with the help of the billi lights so they discharged us.
I left the hospital feeling uneasy, but relived to be heading home. While we were in the hospital the stress on London effected her bowl movements. She stopped pooing after feedings and didn't have one the whole time we were in the hospital. Up to then, they were regular and fine and she was getting all the meconium out of her system. With high billirubin it is important that she was pooping because that is how the system gets rid of it, so leaving knowing that she wasn't getting rid of it, just told me that the only reason why her levels were lowered was from the lights, which they did not send home with us. 
They sent us home with the instruction to get her into her Dr the next day to get her billi checked again.
We did as instructed and after we got home from the (oncall) Dr visit we got a call back with the results. Her billi had shot up to 20 and the Dr told me that when it reaches 24 they are admitted directly into the NICU so she wanted us to get back to the ER asap. She called primarys and rather than going through the ER again they told us to just go straight back into the unit that we had just been released from the morning before!
This is when the panic and frustration for me set in. Hearing the word NICU sent me into full fledged worry and panic. We rushed her back and went through round number 2 in the hospital. 
Night 2 went the same as night 1. They got her all hooked back up and we spent the night there.

 We were discharged again the next day because her billi had gone back down to 14 around noon and again, I left feeling uneasy because she was still not pooping. 
Again, we were instructed to see the Dr. the next day to have her billi checked again to make sure it hadn't gone back up.
Her results came back and her billi had gone back up but this time rather than admitting us, they sent home heath care to our house with a billi light which you can see glowing in the pic below.
She also started sleeping with her hands above her head which was freaking adorable!
This was hard because we had to keep her on the lights 24 hours a day for a few days except for feedings. 

After many many trips to the Dr, many pokes (i should have kept count, but during this time I'm sure she was poked well over 20 times, poor thing) and alot of stress later, her billi finally went down and stayed down. 

We spent some extra nakey time in the sun tho juuuuust in case =)

Here pooping never really normalized, she pooped just a couple times a week if i remember right for the first couple months. The Dr wasn't too concerned about that now that her billi was staying down and just said that some babies don't poop alot. When her poop finally did normalize, it was always fairly hard (like playdough consistancy) and still is.

I think this face sums up how we all felt by the end of this whole ordeal.

Poor baby was such a trooper!