Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Our Weekend: Bringing Home Baby

This weekend ended up quite gloriously!  After spending two weeks in the NICU, we were able to bring Jennavieve home!  I spent much of Sunday afternoon holding my precious baby girl, staring into her face, and reveling in the fact that she is really ours, she's home, and our family is together at last.  The girls are doting big sisters, giving her toys, wanting to hold her, and being very interested in everything about her.  Mason is still trying to figure out this new person who has interrupted his life.  At one point, Mason would cry every time Jennavieve cried.  He's always had a tender heart, but I'm hoping this phase will be short-lived.

I can't believe we really have four children.  Even though Jennavieve is 18 days old, not having her with us day in and day out the past two weeks made it seem like she wasn't really part of our lives.  When we got into the car on Sunday to come home, I turned around and just had to shake my head that there were four carseats in the back, with four little people filling them.  What are we doing? How will I ever manage these little people?

And then I was reminded that I can't manage them, on my own anyway.  There's no way that I can do anything apart from the grace and strength that God gives.  Even though I don't know what I'm doing, I know that God does know what He's doing.  I might be tired, I will surely mess up, there will be tears and laughter, but through it all, as I lean upon the grace of God, I will be able to fulfill my role as Mommy to these four precious people.

Linking up with:


Saturday, July 27, 2013

Stitching for the Kitchen, by Gooseberry Patch

Sewing for the home has been of my favorite hobbies since our wedding, almost seven years ago.  My husband's parents graciously gave us {me} a sewing machine as a wedding gift and I was thrilled!  I had always wanted to learn to sew, and right away I began making things for our apartment.

I was contacted earlier this summer about reviewing this new book by Gooseberry Patch, titled Stitching for the Kitchen: 30 Easy Projects for the Heart of your Home.  Because I just had a baby two weeks ago, instead of making a project from the book, I'm just sharing a little review for you today.


This book has some great projects for handmade items to either keep for your own kitchen or give away to others.  Many of the projects in here are also great for young aspiring seamstresses who want to make a gift for a grandmother, aunt, or close friend.  The instructions are easy to follow, pattern pieces are included, and the back of the book includes some instructional techniques for learning how to sew.

My favorite part of this book is that they give some instructions on how to hand embroider.  This is something I've wanted to learn, as I would love to be able to personalize items without using a machine.  I'm looking forward to trying my hand at embroidering some napkins with monograms.


If you're looking for some handmade projects, this book is perfect!

Be sure to check out the other bloggers who are participating in this blog hop.  Some are giving away copies of the book, and others are highlighting projects from the book.  Don't miss out!

July 22
July 23
July 24
July 25
July 26
July 27
July 28
July 29
July 30
August 1
August 2
Delightful Country Cookin

I received a copy of Stitching for the Kitchen in exchange for writing a review.  All opinions are mine.  

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Introducing Baby #4: A Birth Story

I opened up blogger the other day and noticed that it's been almost one month since I posted anything.  That's the longest I've gone in a while, and I apologize for the absence.  The last few weeks of my pregnancy were pretty tiring.  However, our little girl has arrived!  She's two weeks old today!


Most people who read this blog are women, and most women like to hear the birth story, so let me indulge you.  If you don't care about the details, you can just scroll through the pictures.

This is my fourth baby, and apparently I still don't know what it's really like to be in labor.  We made two visits to the labor/delivery ward before I actually gave birth.  The first trip was June 23, after having contractions for two hours, every five minutes at home, we went in, only to have my contractions increase but no progress made toward labor.  Being sent home was pretty frustrating.  The doctors and nurses continued to be surprised when I would show up for my weekly appointments.  Another false alarm on July 7, my due date, only to have the same thing happen: contractions close together and worse in pain, with no changes.  We got sent home again.

Finally, at my appointment on July 10, I happened to be in tears from something else, when a sweet doctor {this was now the 4th doctor I had seen in 3 weeks} took pity on me and agreed that I could be induced.  I was at 4 cm, and things were ready to go; this little baby girl just needed some help. We received an induction appointment for the next morning and I was elated!  I had never been induced before, so it was strange driving to the hospital, not in labor, knowing that we would have a baby soon.  It was also comforting, though, to know that the other three kids were taken care of, I'd had a good night's rest, and my makeup and hair were fixed.

When we got to the hospital my room wasn't ready, so we grabbed a bite in the cafeteria and hung out in the waiting room for about an hour.  They finally escorted me to the labor/delivery room.  It was the same room where I had given birth to Mason just 15 months before.  This had been one of my fears, but it really wasn't emotional at all to be in there this time around.

By 8:15 I was hooked up to the monitors.  At 9:00 the Doctor came in, another new face.  I was then at 5 cm, so he broke my water and they said they'd start the pitocin right away.  I was still not having any contractions at this point, but I really didn't want to feel them, so I opted for the epidural.  It took effect fairly slowly, which was actually really nice for me.  By 11:30 I could tell I was in transition, as my legs were shaky and the contractions were coming pretty strong and close together.  The epidural worked, but I felt just enough pain that I was able to tell what was going on, which I liked.  Around noon, it was time to push.  Everyone started gathering around:  the new Doctor who broke my water, his Attending Physician, and a recent Medical School graduate, 2 weeks out of school, who had never delivered a baby.  {I love providing education for new Doctors; I really do actually, I just find it humorous that there were so many present}.

Our girl, Jennavieve Lorraine, was born at 12:22pm, pink, healthy, and very big.  We all sat waiting as they put her on the table to see how much she weighed.  Even the Doctor was surprised when 10lbs came up on the monitor!  The most amazing part of all is that this was my first delivery that didn't include any tearing or need for stitches, and she is our biggest baby!  The delivery was so smooth and I had no complications, also another first.  We were so thankful and I was very relieved to not be pregnant anymore.

We had a great day Thursday and Friday together, just loving on her and holding her.  She was such a content baby, hardly crying, waking every 3 hours to eat---it was pretty much perfect!

Saturday morning, we were getting ready to be discharged when the nurse discovered Jennavieve had a fever.  Fevers are never a good sign in a newborn, so she was taken to the NICU to determine what was going on.  After an x-ray, they discovered that she had pneumonia.  I was discharged, but our little girl had to stay at the hospital.

She's now been in the NICU for 12 days, and we received word on Monday that she'll be able to come home this Sunday.  She's doing great, healing well, and we can't wait to have her at home with us!  I'll write more about this experience sometime, but for now, I just wanted to leave you with the news of her arrival.