girraffe

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Neal's 30th

I want to start this post by saying that I really do have the best husband in the world. He is such a support to me and this family and I don't know how I would do this life without him. That being said I really wanted to make his 30th birthday the best I could.

On Thursday December 9th I took a day of vacation all while Neal thought that I was at work. In reality I was running around like my hair was on fire getting everthing together for his suprise party that evening. He knew that his parents were coming in for the weekend to take him out to dinner for his birthday. He kept suggesting places he would like to eat but I kept telling him that there was a place that I really wanted to go as a suprise to him. I sent out an e-vite to everyone asking them to be at the Back 9 Golf Academy in Bentonville by 6:15 and that we would arrive at 6:30. Early in the day I put together a spread of food and picked up the cake and dropped it all off at the party location. I also did some decorating. My wonderful friends and sister (Ashley, Erin, Chelsea and Brandon) got there a little before 6 to set out all of the food and cake that I had made and dropped off there earlier in the day.



Neal's parents, Neal, Reese and I all got in the car to head to dinner. About the time when we were going to exit 540 we made him put a blindfold on and at that point he knew something fishy was going on. Once we exited the freeway I made a lot of extra turns to confuse him and I think it worked because he says he was very suprised by where we ended up and was so happy with it all. We all had a fun time.

The real reason that Neal's parents came in was to take care of Reese while we ran off to Miami for the weekend to celebrate his birthday in the sun. I have never laid out and swam in December before but I do think I will plan to do it again one day. It was such a relaxing and enjoyable weekend. We did a lot of eating, some shopping, some laying by the pool and swimming and even got a massage by the ocean. It was a great weekend!



For his actual birthday, the 14th, Reese and I brought him breakfast in bed. We also cooked him his typical birthday dinner, hamburger steak, sauteed mushrooms and fingerling potatoes. It was Reese's Christmas party at school that night as well so we took her to see Santa, which was a fun thing to do on his birthday as well.

All in all I think he had a good birthday week. I am so thankful for him and hope that I spoiled him enough for his 30th celebration.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Cutest spider ever!

I am a little late posting this but I couldn't skip getting such cute photos of the cutest spider I have ever seen. She didn't love her costume as it was a bit hot but she looked so darn cute.


Monday, October 18, 2010

Fall

I love Fall! There are so many things about it that I love...soup and chili, the cool air, the gorgeous foliage, putting out a mum, carving or paining pumpkins and the thought of Christmas being just around the corner.

A group of friends and us took a trip to Branson last weekend with 3 babies. All of the babies did so well. We took one trip to the outlet mall with the 3 babies and the moms. I had a realization that shopping is not the same by myself with a baby. Neal is so much help and I appreciate him so much. I was worn out Saturday evening after running around all day with Reese and without his help. Overall it was a fun trip!

Tonight we sat outside with Reese and painted pumpkins. Enjoy the cute pictures, we are so happy with the way they turned out.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Neal's Precious Grandparents

Last weekend Neal's sweet Meme and Papa came to Northwest Arkansas to visit. This was such a special visit for Neal. They had never been to NWA before. Neal deep cleaned the house and cars in preparation for the visit and so wanted everything to be just perfect.

On Friday night we cooked dinner for them and hung out at the house. Everyone had fun just hanging out with Reese. Saturday we rented a car that everyone could fit into and we took them on a tour of the area. We drove by the UofA and showed them Neal's name in the sidewalk (mine was too far of a walk). We stopped for a lunch break at Panera, took them to see Walmart headquarters (I know so exciting) and stopped by a couple of other places. Saturday evening we ate at Monte Ne Chicken, which is always good.
The visit was so much fun for everyone. Who knows if they will get up here again but I am so glad that we were able to do it and that we got some great photos:




Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Her new found voice

So this video is really long but Reese has discovered that she has a voice to use and boy is she using it often the last few days. She is SO cute!











Sorry that the blog no longer has a cute background. For some reason my background was deleted and I cannot figure out how to add another one. If anyone has suggestions let me know.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Back to work

Going back to work has been easier than I thought it would be. While it is very sad to miss all that I will I am kind of glad to be back to a routine. Reese did contract a rash the second day of daycare, which was nerve racking, but things could be a lot worse. She seems to be fine with day care and her teachers really seem to love her. I get to go see her at lunch every day and spend about 40 minutes with her and feed her. I think this makes it a lot more tolerable. I love her so much and miss her every moment but for now I know we are doing what is best for our family. I love my job but hate that I have to spend so much time away from Reese. Maybe in the future I will find something that requires less hours but for now this is where we are at.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Cutest Smiler Ever!

While I was in the restroom at a restaurant the other day Neal took the time to video Reese smiling. Keep in mind this video was taken on his phone so the quality is not the best but it is still the most precious thing. I love her!



video

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The dreadded shots


Reese is 11 weeks old this week. She had her 2 month check up on Monday. She was so happy the entire visit until it came time for her shots. Once the first shot went in she dropped her pacifier out of her mouth, turned red and began screaming at the top her lungs. She was completely inconsolable and it was so sad. This photo is after I have been trying to comfort her for 5 minutes or so. Neal ended up taking her to the car and sitting in the back with her while I scheduled the next round of shots. She cried herself to sleep after a few moments of being in the car with him. I am not looking forward to having to do this again in the future but next time I am going to nurse her as soon as the shots are administered. After she woke up she seemed to be just fine and didn't have the normal bad effects like soreness, fussiness and fever so I am thankful for that.

She weighed in at 12 pounds and six ounces which is the 75th percentile on the growth charts. She is 24.5" tall which is the 97th percentile and she was the 90th percentile for head circumference (Neal said the big head is thanks to him). She is growing perfectly!

My assignment for the next 6 weeks is to eliminate one of the two night feedings. She has done this for me the past three nights which is a blessing. Last night she slept for 8 hours straight and went 9 hours and 50 minutes between feedings!!! I won't count on this happening again but it was really nice.

I love this baby so much and am so happy for a good report. Thinking about going back to work in just over a week is not an easy thought. I am hoping it goes well!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Home

I got to go home to Houston for an entire week last week! It has been a long time since I've been able to go home for that long and just relax. I had a great time with my family and I'm so happy that everyone got to meet Reese.



Reese took her 1st flight on the way to Houston. Neal flew down with us but he only stayed for the weekend so we flew back alone. She was perfectly behaved for both flights. Coming back I was especially nervous for two reasons...one she had been fussy all evening and two the flight was completely full and I was alone. She was so fussy when we got to the airport that the airline graciously allowed my Mom through security to help me out until we got on the flight. She cried all the way until we stepped on to the plane and was then perfectly content for the entire flight. She didn't sleep except for the last 5 minutes but was so good and happy. I was SO relieved.


While in Houston I got to do all of the things that I really wanted to. I got to hang out with the whole family and they got to meet Reese, Reese and I got to spend a lot of quality time with my Mom, I did some shopping and found some clothes that will fit me and my new and unimproved size, I got to hang out with Carrie one afternoon and had a very fun time with her, I got to eat the chocolate cake that I saw on the show "The best thing I ever ate" (it was $16!, I couldn't believe it), my Mom and I got our nails done, we went to Costco and I got to eat at all of my must haves. It was a great trip!

A week from tomorrow my Mom will be here and the rest of the family will be here for the following weekend for our annual 4th of July festivities. I am really looking forward to it and I will post some photos soon after. Happy Summer!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Sisters

My Sisters finally got to meet Reese! They have both been to NW Arkansas in the last week to visit and we all had a great time.

Chelsea came in to town two Saturdays ago and stayed with us through last Friday. We had a great time with her and she was such a help. She even took Reese in the morning a couple of the mornings and let me sleep, which any Mom knows that is a blessing. We made a picnic lunch one day and took it out to Lake Fayetteville, we went on many walks, we went to a lake in Springdale and Neal fished while Chelsea, Reese and I walked, we did a little shopping and lots of hanging out around the house. It is so good to have Chelsea back in the country and Reese loved spending time with her Aunt Chelsea.

Last Thursday Carrie, Alex and Jacob came in to spend the weekend and we also had a great time with them. It was fun to have them around for a few days and Carrie definitely has a great touch when trying to get Reese to sleep. She helped rock her to sleep multiple times and it was nice to have extra people around that were eager to hold her...I was actually able to get some other things done. I was able to get out of the house with Carrie and Chelsea and do a little shopping. They got a pool for the back yard for Jacob to swim in that we all enjoyed and we went out for some Monte Ne Chicken, which is always good. We took Jacob out to fish but he got his lure stuck on something within minutes and the line broke so that was short lived. It just turned into a long walk, which was also fun.
The past week or so have been really enjoyable. Reese has turned into a really content baby. We even took her to Tulsa yesterday to shop and she was so good. I am feeling better about the flight that we will be taking with her in a couple of weeks. She also slept from 8:30 to 8 last night with only one feeding in the middle and she went back to sleep after the feeding in about 15 minutes. I cannot count on this to happen again (it is not her normal at all) but I am so grateful for it. It at least gives me hope for the future!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I've never wanted to grocery shop so badly

I have found that now that I have a baby I will go to great lengths to accomplish something that I never would have put so much effort into before. Today I really wanted to accomplish grocery shopping. I was actually looking forward to it because it would get me out of the house for a couple of hours. I have found that typically if we are in the car for longer than 15 minutes Reese will fall asleep and once she falls asleep in her carrier she is usually out pretty hard for a good while. So, I decided to go grocery shopping in Siloam Springs...I never before would have driven to Siloam to go to Walmart but this was going to give her enough time to get good and asleep. I fed her before we left and made sure I had my grocery list, wallet and all of the other things that have to go with us now that I have Reese.

When we first got into the car she was pretty happy but by the time we were to Tontitown she was fussing and once we reached Siloam she was screaming. I was not about to attempt grocery shopping with her this upset so we parked in the parking lot and I got in the back and calmed her down and got her to suck on her pacifier and begin falling asleep. I then decided to drive back through Springdale and head to Fayetteville to grocery shop, thinking she would be asleep by the time we got there for sure. She lost her pacifier as soon as we began driving again and she started crying again. Once we got to Springdale I decided to take 112 since it is a windy 2 lane highway. I thought the turns may soothe her??? It actually worked. She fell asleep soon after we got on 112.

She was out until we reached Walmart's parking lot. She woke up and was fussing again. It was only fussiness and not full blown crying so I decided to try it. I thought she may enjoy sitting in her carrier in the basket and looking around since that is kind of like riding in the stroller and she usually enjoys that. No luck, we made it through 4 items on the grocery list and then decided we were going to have to leave. I guess we will just have to try this again another day. Of course, she fell asleep on the way home and she is still sleeping now.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

My very 1st Mother's Day

I have had such a great first Mother's Day! I think the best part was that Neal took over Reese duty all night last night and I got to sleep from 11 to 7 and it was soooo wonderful. He woke me up at about 7 to nurse Reese and while I was doing that he made me breakfast and gave me my gift and cards. Baxter and Barkley got me a card, Reese got me a card and he got me a card...they were all so cute. He also got me diamond earrings!!! They are so pretty. The idea is that these are my first diamond earrings that I will wear until Reese is 18 and at that time I pass them on to her and I get bigger ones. I thought this was so sweet and also a special idea. For lunch we went and ate at Primo and Reese was pretty good for one of her first restaurant outings.

While I have had a great day it has also been difficult thinking about how far away I am from my family today and every other day (especially holidays and worse now that I have Reese). I wish so badly that we could quickly get there and I want my extended family to get to meet her. My Dad and Sister's still have not met her and that really kills me. I know they will in time but it is hard. Even if I could be just a few hours away as we are with Neal's family it would make it a lot easier. I LOVE living where we do but this is one part of it that I do not love.

As great of this day is for so many I feel for all of those who have either lost a child or long to have a child. I know what it is like to long to have a child and be so frustrated on Mother's Day. I cannot imagine how hard this day would be if I had lost a child.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

I made it...

This past weekend one of my close friends got married. She asked me to be in the wedding months ago and although I knew it would only be weeks after Reese was born I knew I wanted to do it, I was concerned about how it would go though. It ended up going perfectly.

The wedding was outdoors at this gorgeous barn just east of Fayetteville. I had to bring Reese with me to the rehearsal because it was at 5 and Neal could not get out of work early. Reese was a perfect angel. She slept through the entire rehearsal, woke up at the end and ate and went back to sleep on the car ride to the dinner and slept the remainder of the evening. The day of the wedding Neal took care of her the majority of the day as I had to get myself ready and get out to the wedding location for photos. She was a good little baby for her Daddy. Neal brought her to the ceremony and about an hour of the reception. She was so good! He brought her home after all of our friends that wanted to hold her got to and she ended up falling asleep in the car on the way home and stayed asleep until I got home and she wanted to eat.

I am so glad that I got to participate in Helen and Brett's beautiful day, it was so pretty and so much fun. Congratulations Helen and Brett!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

A few photos

She is not a fan of bath time.

We were both so worn out when we got home from the hospital and fell asleep on the couch.
I love her big, pouty, red lips.

Our little family, minus Baxter.


Sweet baby.






Thursday, April 22, 2010

We are so in love

I haven't updated the blog in a while for good reason...we have been busy with a new baby! Last time I updated the blog was a few days before we were scheduled to be induced, on Tuesday the 13th. My Mom flew in the prior Saturday so she would be there in case I went into labor early. On Sunday my Mom and I went for a long walk, hoping that it may spur on natural labor. While we were on the walk I felt what I thought could be my water leaking but was not sure. Later that day we decided to go into the hospital just to have it checked out. The hospital said that it was not amniotic fluid but as a routine they hooked me up to the monitor before releasing me. Everything was coming back normal on the monitor so they were filling out the paperwork to release me. Just as I was about to be released I went into a long contraction and Reese's heart rate dropped to a level that was not okay. All of a sudden there were 6 nurses hovered around me and they were paging the Dr. They started an IV and hooked me up to oxygen. Needless to say I was very freaked out and wondered if my baby was going to be okay. They said they needed to keep me hooked up for at least another 3 hours to make sure that did not happen again. About an hour later it did happen again and they said they were going to hold me over night to monitor me and let my Dr. decide what he wanted to do when he was there making his rounds the following morning. Later that night the on call Dr. went ahead and made the decision to induce me the following morning at 5, since it was only a day before I was scheduled to be induced anyway. Even though they gave me a sleeping pill I did not sleep very well...being 9 months and 3 weeks pregnant I had to pee every hour and to go to the restroom I had to drag an IV with me and unhook 4 cords and wear them around my neck to the bathroom and re hook myself before getting back into bed. Also, everytime I would shift they would lose Reese's heart beat and a nurse would have to come in and adjust the things on my stomach so that they could get her heart beat again.


The next morning at 5 a.m. they began pitocin in my IV to induce contractions. At 6 they gave me my epidural. By 8 I was 5 cm. dilated and 90% effaced, my Dr. came in and broke my water at that time. They decided to check me again at 10 and they said it was time to push. I could not believe it went that fast and thought they must be joking when they said it was already time to push. They spent about 30 minutes getting everything set up- they brought in so much equiptment and there were around 14 people in the room (my nurses, pediatric nurses, a nurse trainee and her instructor, some EMS trainee that had to watch one birth to complete his training, Neal, my Mom and Neal's Mom and later my Dr.). I began pushing at 10:35 and after pushing for about 15 minutes my Dr. got there and by 11:09 Reese was born! It all went so smoothly and I really never felt any pain, mild discomfort but no pain. The worst part was my heart burn.

The last 10 days of Reese's life have been amazing, tiring by amazing. She is such a precious baby that we love so much. She has her days and nights a bit confused but we are working on that. Below is a picture of our precious baby, I will post some more of our favorites later.

Friday, April 2, 2010

April 13th!

My Dr scheduled to induce me on Tuesday April 13th (at 4 a.m.!) I have already scheduled to start my maternity leave on Monday April 12th since I will have to go for pre-op that day anyways. I cannot believe that in 11 days, or less, Neal and I will get to meet our child that we have been waiting and praying for for so long! I am really excited!

As of Wednesday I am now 3 cm. dilated and 80% effaced so it is very likely that she may come before the 13th. We are now just anxiously waiting!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Waiting Game

I am 37 weeks today! If Reese were to come any time after today she will be considered full term. I am so relieved to have made it to 37 weeks and to know that she should be completely healthy at this point in the outside world. I know it is way too much to ask but I wish I could know when and how this whole birthing thing is going to happen. I am having a ton of Braxton Hicks contractions but nothing else to report. When I went to the Dr. last Wednesday I had no changes, still 2 centimeters dilated and 50% effaced. He said I could have her that day or I could end up holding until my due date. He assured me that he will not let me go past my due date so he will induce me sometime around the 18th of April.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

35 weeks

I am 35 weeks, almost 36 weeks. The Dr checked me for the first time today. He considered waiting to start checking me until next week but was glad that he decided to today because I am 2 centimeters dilated and 50% effaced. He will be in Europe next week for Spring break and he moved me to the top of the list of patients that may deliver while he is out. According to the ultra sound they say that she weighs about 6 lbs. 8 oz. They said that I am far enough along that she should be just fine and they will not try to stop my labor, if I do in fact go into labor. I have been having a lot of contractions the last few days but they are not painful just an extreme tightening of my belly so I assume these are just braxton hicks...hopefully I will be able to tell when they are real contractions. They sure did seem to think that I will be having her soon but I have known quite a few women who have remained 2 or 3 centimeters for a matter of weeks...we will see. He assures me that with my gestational diabetes they will not let me go a day past my due date so at least I know that we will be meeting Reese soon!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Restroom Revamp

Most of our focus over the last 34 weeks has been on baby preparation but we have recently taken some time to re-do our guest bathroom. I so wish that we had taken some before photos but I do not have any. 5 years ago we thought it was a good idea to paint the bathroom bright red. Wow how our taste has changed over these years. We did this room very modern and we definitely liked how it turned out at the time but over the years we have become tired of it and have veered away from the modern style that we once really liked.

The new bathroom could not have turned out better. I am so lucky to have wonderful In-laws that volunteered to come up and paint our bathroom and laundry room for us since I am unable to paint being pregnant. This was not an easy project being that the bathroom was a deep, bright red. My Father-in-law painted the entire thing with a brush so that he could get it covered in one coat. Although he does not really like to paint I could not have picked a better person to do it since he is such a perfectionist and very handy. The plan was to take down the glued on mirror and I was going to put up two framed mirrors but he realized that they had applied so much glue that it would have really torn up the wall. So, plan B is that he has taken measurements and is building a frame to put around the glued on mirror to make it look better.

I really appreciate having so much help and could not be happier with the way that our bathroom turned out!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

The most adorable big lips

One of the upsides to gestational diabetes is more ultrasounds. If I had a perfectly healthy pregnancy I would most likely not have any more ultrasounds after the one that I had at 21 weeks. I have posted some photos below of the ultrasound that we had just over a week ago, at 31 weeks. Neal and I could not believe how big her lips look. I think that ultrasounds slightly distort things and this photo does not show the full extent of how large they looked. I would be thrilled if she has really full lips just like her Daddy, we found it really cute and funny.


Cute little foot:They say (at 31 weeks) she weighed 4 lbs. 7 oz., this sounds large to me. My doctor said she is weighing about 10 days large. So I may be induced early or maybe her growth will slow some, we will see. Everything checked out perfectly healthy so I am grateful for that. The ultrasound technician was kind of snippy this time...I asked her where the baby was positioned and her response was "in your uterus". Neal and I kind of looked at each other like did she really just answer that question that way. The doctor warned us that she can sometimes lack in people skills but that she is excellent at what she does. We didn't see this during the first ultrasound but caught a glimpse during this one, maybe she was just having a bad day. I responded with- is she head down, head up, sideways??? Reese is head down and in perfect position, hopefully she stays this way.

Her profile:

I will be 33 weeks tomorrow, only 7 weeks to go!!! I cannot believe we are this close and cannot wait to meet her. Being the planners that we both are we already have our bags packed and ready to go and Neal has installed the car seat. Now we just need the baby.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Reese's nursery is 95% complete...

We have all of the major projects complete in the nursery. We have a few more things that we want to do but for the most part we are finished so I thought I would post a few photos!!!