he looks different now but this is a few hours old

i am trying to get some more pictures to put up! he looks a little different - still old man alien like but less swollen!

i wanted to say a few things: (shocker!)

1. thank you to everyone for the emails, phone calls, FOOD! (i am so hungry! aparantly you need 600 to 700 additional calories per day to breastfeed - score!), and plethora of other gifts! it's overwhelming and we love you all.

my mom and dad are here (my mom seriously rocks - she cleaned the bathtub so i could bathe and did some laundry/replaced sheets and cleaned our kitchen and gave me a foot rub! in exchange, she got a little lovin on naterade. haha.) (my mother-in-law also seriously rocks - among other things, she brought flowers and a baby boy wreath for the door - so cute - and more delicious food INCLUDING a large tupperwear of mashed potatoes. mmmm taters. we all know how i feel about them. karl says nater tot better like them as well.)

everyone has been awesome. we apologize if we haven't touched base with you. please forgive. we promise we aren't going anywhere and we want everyone to come love on nate patrick.

(warning: breast feeding paragraph to follow. please skim down if you can't handle!) to follow up on nate, the whole milk thing is going surprisingly well. he did get some latching practice about 10 minutes after birth (on the bathroom floor!) and has been a pretty good latcher ever since. the milk is here! woo hoo! (as of this morning! i was starting to stress a bit it would never "come in" as they say.) i was thinking we would have another week before nate arrived so i was really just starting to read all my breastfeeding books - but SO FAR (knock on wood?) things are pretty pleasant. it is simply amazing that babies just know to suck. AND it makes me THIRSTY. i can't stop drinking water while he is on there. and the colostrum that comes before the milk? yea, it's kind of shiny and sparkly like lip gloss. very pretty. and bizarre. and the milk is not at all what i thought it would look like (cows milk it is not), but nate seems not to mind. he CLEARLY prefers one side over the other so we are working on that. (and, somer clark-day, my breast friend IS, in fact, my best friend. i will take a picture of 'the breast friend' somer gave me. it is similar to a boppy - a glorified and sturdy pillow you wrap around your middle for extra support for you and baby. i am pretty sure i could not live without it.) the whole thing is pretty crazy, really. ALSO for the record, breast feeding gives you those post-birth CONTRACTIONS that shrink your uterus. (tee hee, uterus.) well, i am pretty sure you have to have these contractions any hoo but bf'ing makes them happen. like, right then. and they don't feel good! i promise. but everyone keeps telling me it is GREAT that i am having them. nice, right. (it's okay that i am sharing that, right? i never know who reads and/or how much information to put out there!)

some other follow up.... so far nate is pretty chill. he is still pretty young so he sleeps bunches (during the day of course! he is still figuring night v. day. and he was always WAY more active inside me during the evening/night time so that pretty much is holding true in real life.) and he definately has a set of lungs. (sweet.) the pedi checked him out and says, so far, he looks just dandy. she wants to take another look at him next week since he is so new.

and, finally, we have gotten a lot of questions about how non-freaked/calm we were about the whole situation. i promise we were freaked BUT i would like to say that i never felt ridiculously scared... mainly b/c well, there wasn't a WHOLE lot of time to, BUT MOSTLY b/c of all the preperation we had done. ESPECIALLY our birth classes. (and i swear i thought karl hated them but he retained a ridiculous amount of knowledge from them!) initially, when we found out we were pregnant, we looked into both home births and hospital births and did a lot of research about both. also, my prenatal care was phenomenal and i knew that i was ridiculously healthy and that the baby was healthy. i also knew that the baby was positioned correctly... ALL that being said, i'm sure there are plenty of other things that could have been wrong or distressed the baby.... and i would, of course, never EVER choose an unattended birth BUT, i must say... next time, if all parties are happy and healthy, that home birth option with a licensed midwife sounds pretty sweet! next time....hahahahahhahah. we will have plenty of time to think about that!


From where I stand here's how it happened

You know when I was a little kid I wanted to grow up to be a doctor...I don't know what kind but I think I'll just stick to computers!

Kat is little more verbose than I am and I won't go into as much detail as she will but here's what happened:

We went for the walk that Kat talked about and got home around 9:45pm. I had a couple things to finish up on the computer and Kat went to the bedroom to lay down and I guess read or something relaxing.

I finished up about 10:30pm and went into the bedroom where Kat informed me that she was having some contractions, but nothing stronger than what she's had before. So I just chalked it up to Braxton-Hicks and started getting ready for bed.

About 11:00pm Kat told me that the contractions were starting to get stronger and felt different than the ones she's had before. That's when I started to get excited and started wondering if we'd have a boy/girl in the next 24 hours. Immediately I started timing the contractions. They were irregular, 2 minutes apart, 4 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, etc. They were also pretty short, 30-40 seconds. I learned in med school (also called Babyworks) that when they got to 60 seconds we would know that the labor was real and moving along.

Even though the contractions were not very regular I decided to call Kim, the doula, and see what she thought. She advised, based on what Kat said about the pain level, that sleep would be best so that Kat could save up her energy for whatever was around the corner. That happened at about 12:30am on the 26th.

After about an hour I realized that the contractions were getting a little strong and a little more regular, but they were still only about 30 seconds. Again I called Kim and told her that Kat wasn't going to be sleeping and that she should probably come on over and check things out. Kim lives about 30 minutes away so she said she would be at our house in about 45 minutes. Sounds reasonable when you are expecting this to take hours and hours.

At around 2:00am I called Kim, who was on the interstate and told her that things were getting stronger and that I thought Kat was pushing (but I kept thinking how could she already be pushing?). Kim said that we might want to start thinking about going to the hospital. I went in and checked with Kat and she just wanted to wait a couple minutes and then we would head out to the hospital. I had the bags packed and already in the car and all I had to do was put the dogs out.

It was about 2:15am and I was headed to the back door to let the dogs out and that's when Kat let out a scream that I knew meant something was up. I ran down the hall and to the bathroom and was shocked at what I saw...it was a bag of water just hanging there (freaky!). I looked at her face and saw that she was a little scared, and so was I. But that was the only moment that either of us could even feel that way.

I called Kim and told her what was going on and she said that we needed to get to the hospital quickly. I said that I didn't think we would make it. That's when she said that we had to make a decision about what we would do. I said that we would go to the hospital and I began to help Kat get ready. But the pushing contractions were coming so quickly that there wasn't even time to get her dressed between them. That's when I realized we were in for something crazy.

It was about 2:35am when I called Kim for the last time and said that we couldn't leave because I didn't want to have this baby on the side of the road. She said that was cool and that she would stay on the phone with me and walk me through whatever happened.

Thinking back on it all now I don't know how I didn't feel stressed out, but I guess that was my first experience at being a parent and just doing what you have to do.

Anyway, back to the bathroom...I told Kim that I thought the baby was coming and then all of a sudden I saw the head starting to push out. I thought maybe it would push out a little and then go back in like we had seen on many of the birthing videos. Nope. I had the phone to one ear and had my hands ready for whatever happened, and it happened fast.

One push and then Nate's head was all the way out. I had a towel and wiped his face off and while that was happening Kat pushed again and he turned to the side and his shoulder's slid through. After that it was lighting quick and I was kneeling there on the floor with our baby in my arms.

I helped Kat get down onto the floor and them placed Nate on her chest and then grabbed some more towels. After that I had to step out of the bathroom for just a second to just process what had happened and then I was good to go until Kim got there.

Well, the rest of the story from my end is the same as Kat's except that I just watched and helped Kim and Stephanie with whatever they needed.

It was AMAZING. Delivering a baby in your house with just you and your wife is the most private thing there is. We didn't plan it that way, but everyone is healthy and safe and I wouldn't change a thing about it.


this was NOT the birth plan

sorry for being such a blog tease. things are a little hectic with emails and phone calls (but not really too bad b/c we haven't even left the house! we are just enjoying our quiet time getting to know nate! it is SO CALM.)

first of all karl and i would like to state that delivering our child unattended at home was NOT in 'the birth plan'. we were intending on going to the hospital. (we looked at the birth plan after delivery this morning and laughed - i guess we got every single thing we wanted - no drugs, no ivs, immediate contact, and oh so much more...)

on the drug note, i would like to say the only drugs i have taken since this whole whirlwind started - two aleve after delivery for the stitch up! i didn't even have time to THINK about drugs. seriously it happened so fast i couldn't even tell you what i thought about. there was no focusing or breathing through ANYTHING. there was no music played. no sitting on the birth ball. no getting in the bathtub. (well the shower i did make use of several times.)

so details are as follows: (this may be long and i hope i don't gross anyone out with details.)

players: karl, kat, nate, kim (our doula who is also a certified midwife thank the lord) and stephanie (awesome assistant doula).

karl and i go on a walk around 9 p.m. - having the usual braxton hicks mini-contractions i have been having for weeks. annoying, not so painful. we come home... i guess around 11:30 or so I have a contraction and i think "now THAT was a real one! this baby might come tonight!" but i still didn't want to get my hopes up in case it was fake! ALL of our classes and pretty much the whole world says first time moms have on average 12-16 hour labors and are usually overdue. we wanted to labor at home as long as possible to avoid the monitoring at the hospital - plus i had some irrational fear the hospital would say i wasn't really in labor and send me home.

so we hang out for about thirty minutes and i have some contractions. i am hoping my timeline is right here. time got a little crazy. around midnight we decide this is probably the real deal and decide to give kim a call:

kim: on a scale of one to ten, what is your pain level (10 being highest).
me: 2. (dead serious. i said two! and had a baby in my arms two hours later!)

kim says sounds like early labor; i should try and take some benedryl and get some rest to gear up for tomorrow and to call her if anything changes. i try to lay down but this proves to be IMPOSSIBLE. i decide not to take the benydryl. contractions are coming about three minutes apart but are only lasting like thirty seconds so i really didn't think they were 'doing their job.' (generally THE PEOPLE say good contractions last around 60 seconds - i swear i never had one that lasted that long but they were one on top of the other so i guess it's all relative.) i showered (THE BLUE BATHROOM IN OUR MASTER BEDROOM WAS WHERE THE WHOLE THING WENT DOWN!) on and off for the next hour or so. the only comfortable things were standing in the shower and sitting (excuse me) on the toilet. i just went back and forth.

then things got a little crazy and hazy. i can't sit still. karl decides to call kim to have her come (no time concept here) who gets up to get on her way (she is about 30 minutes from us), saying we should meet at the hospital b/c it sounds like i am progressing fast. i should mention at this point that i am pushing b/c i can't possibly do anything else. i have to push. have to.

i should also say at this point karl and i have a short conversation that goes like this: (i am in the blue bathroom; he is on the bed timing contractions (on contractionmaster.com HAHA!) i do not want him to touch me or be near me really.

karl: (accusatory and in shock/disbelief): are you pushing?!?!
me: NO. (total and complete denial. at this point, i really still think they are strong contractions. looking back the pressure was kind of insane down there so i am not sure HOW i could have thought that. i just didn't think it was possible to progress that fast.)
karl: YOU ARE PUSHING. i am calling kim again to tell her. (tattle tale!)

karl puts bags in car. karl goes to let dogs in backyard. he never makes it. (arlo and roxy watched the whole labor and delivery quietly from their front row seats in their beds; they didn't bother us once but they sure were paying attention the whole time!) i let out some sort of blood curtling scream while he is in the kitchen. i don't know WHAT it sounded like but it sent him back at 90 miles per hour. turns out, my 'bag of water' was ON THE OUTSIDE. no, not broken. no gush, no 'water breaking' like in the movies. it was perfectly in tact and HANGING b/w my legs. just dangling, really. (sorry if this grosses you out!) it was the most bizarre feeling in the whole world. it was long and stretchy. totally freakshow.

kim says (she and karl are still on the phone so, really, the I-phone played a key role in the delivery so THANK GOD karl has one. i am confident no other phone could have done the job as well.) we need to either get to the hospital RIGHT NOW or stay put. (all this time we were like 'oh the hospital is only 5 minutes away, no way we wouldn't make it there! we could walk there!') karl asks me what i want to do and i must have looked at him helplessly b/c he said "ok. i am making the call. we are going to the hospital." i asked him to get me some underwear to which he laughed at me b/c the BAG WAS JUST HANGING there. ew. sorry. i put on some basketball shorts and i could here karl rifling thru the closet to find me some matching shoes. (thank god we did not go to L&D - can you imagine what they would have thought?!?! and for those of you that know me well, he could only match my purple flowered slipper hut flip flops. THAT made me smile during labor.). this was the only part of the whole labor and delivery that felt panick-ey. once we decided to stay home, we just did it. i don't know how else to explain that.

he grabs the flip flops and i let out some other crazy noise and i really can't not push. i can NOT explain the URGE. (by the way i am standing in the blue bathroom - supported by one arm on the sink and one arm on the window for leverage - that is how i delivered.) he reaches down and says something to kim about crowning/feeling what he thinks is the head. we immediately decide the car is not going to work and i will, in fact, deliver on the side of the highway at 2am if we get in it. i hear kim through the phone saying something about how awesome we are doing and how she is going 90 miles per hour down the highway.

then i just let my body push out the baby. i mean, i can't stop it. i hear them talking about which way he is facing or something.... i don't know. i hear karl say 'he has hair'... then 'his head is out' and then he just slipped out all fast and slippery like and karl catches him. (and then hear karl say 'he has a penis!') three pushes maybe got him out? it was crazy. i remember thinking HE IS HUGE - how did that come out of me? he cries once or twice and it doesn't sound fluid-ey at all. then he just stares at us. eyes wide open.

(and i would like to state for the record that i didn't even say one cuss word the whole time!! now afterwards...)

kim is still on phone and almost there. thank god. baby is still attached to his cord. she has karl sit me down on the floor of the bathroom. it's starting to look A LITTLE like a CSI crime scene in our bathroom. (sorry but there was blood everywhere! it splattered all over the wall! you probably didn't need to know that.) anyway, my lovely PLACENTA slides out once i am sitting down. (and, yes, it was HUGE and purple. and it is in my freezer right now b/c, well, we weren't at the hospital where they just dispose of it and, we can't throw it out b/c it is summertime in the south. you probably didn't need to know that either. but i figure if you have made it this far in the read, you want to know!)

things are a bit surreal here. karl and i are just staring at each other and the baby like 'what the _______ just happened here?' it was like 2, 2:30.

kim walks in, clamps the cord (she asks karl if he wants to cut it and he tells her at this point cord cutting is a bit anti-climatic since he just caught the baby! haha!), she cuts the cord, and gets me up and in the shower (which was totally awesome b/c 1. it was RIGHT THERE one foot away and 2. it was MY shower. so much for all those travel shampoos i bought for the hospital!) kim's assistant stephanie is right behind her with some other miscellaneous supplies - i won't go into too many details about these but they include diapers. and not for the baby.)

she does check me and i do have some tearing (2nd degree for all you moms out there... i still don't really know what that means, but whatever.) so we need stiches. i mean, really, the baby came so fast how could i not tear?!? and no, i did not feel anything tear. she tells me at this point we need to decide if we want to call my doctor and go to the hospital to get stiched and checked out (both me and baby) or if we want to contiue the midwifery/homebirth model, we can stay home and she can take care of both of us. honestly, the hospital sounded HORRIBLE and they definately would have looked at us like freak shows so the decision was pretty simple. we stayed.

she stiched me up. (she did give me a local shot of lanocane? to numb me. but i would like to say i could still feel the threading. very odd. not painful, just odd.) OH AND i would like to say that i played my labor mix during the whole after birth time. and it was relaxing dammit!

then we got on to the fun part - THE BABY CHECKING. he weighed in at 7 lbs. 4 ounces and was 21 inches long! (it also should be noted he has freak show long toes like his father!) everything else checked out fine... his temperature was a little low... but kim came back later and it was fine. we are also going to the pedi in the morning. (so i am sure we will get to hear all about what horrible parents we are for having a (albeit somewhat accidental) home birth.

so, really, that's it. i can't even explain how it happened. i feel amazing and have been up walking around all day! crazy. i just felt NORMAL afterward. (i did look a bit ghost-like with all the blood loss.)

and whoever LIED to me and said my ankle swelling would go away immediatly after birth is going down....it is still there. also, my stomach looks ca-razy and i want my innie back now. please and thank you. also, i am still having contractions as my stomach/uterus shrinks back. (yea, nobody tells you that those hurt a lot too. i thought they would just be annoying but they really hurt!)

what other questions were there? CONGRATS to CARRIE for winning the cash $$ from the baby pool. karl says we can NEVER move now that we have birthed a baby IN THE HOUSE. i will have him put up a post tomorrow with details from his point of view. roxy and arlo have sniffed the baby and licked on him a bit. pretty sure arlo could care less, but roxy seems a bit spooked. she did love sniffing all that blood all crime scene canine like. (she could smell it after we cleaned; we didn't just let her sniff it). i don't think he really looks like anyone yet - he is still swolled up though from his short journey through the birth canal. it was so fast his head was barely misshappen.

and, yes, karl would forevermore like to referred to as a 'doc-tour' of midwifery.

so, yea, we had our baby. in a bathroom.

further questions?

1 day old (almost exactly 24 hours!)

i am up!

updating now with the story. will try not to be too gruesome. it was absolutely insane. i am not sure i will be able to properly communicate. post your questions in the comments and i will try to answer them.

oh and

it's a BOY.

we think nate patrick but will announce officially when we are fully awake.

the baby is here

karl delivered the baby.

in our bathroom.

no lie.

we are still at home!

story to follow.

(everyone is fine.)


i must admit i am tired of being pregnant today

so i guess every pregnant lady gets to that point.

the point where they are done being pregnant.

i am there. at the moment. i am sure i will be over it later.

maybe it is today.

maybe it is the heat. (it's 95 here. we have been lucky to have a mild june this far though!)

maybe it is having to be at work.

maybe it is going to the doctor's every week by myself. (seriously, there is just no point in karl going. it takes forever and they don't do anything. i do love my doctor but i am kind of tired of his face. i don't want to see it again until i'm at the hospital.)

maybe it is the trace of protein they found in my urine (ew) that according to the doctor i am 'not supposed to worry about.' (to which i immediately googled. bad idea. ha!)

i am serving the baby an eviction notice. GET OUT. (or just stay in there; whatever)

(progress: 2 cm and 80% effacement but baby is still sitting 'pretty high'). (progress is good no matter how small - karl said if i was running a dilation marathon i would be five miles in! we were also laughing b/c it's not like the baby has FAR to go. i mean, what, inches to move down? it's kind of crazy that it can take so long to move on out!)

karl also ordered me a subscription to mlb.com (major league baseball DOT COM) so i can further my baseball obsession. when he called to check on something, they put him through to someone overseas who had no idea what or where arkansas was. AMERICA's PAST TIME PEOPLE. we both were entertained. and i am happily devouring more games online.

38 weeks, 4 days (i know, i know, still some time left)


summer solstice : christmas in june

after two sleepless nights (seriously maybe 3 hours each night!) i FINALLY got some relief and slept almost 10 straight. (well, i did get up every hour and a half to pee but that is A-Ok when you can actually fall back asleep again!) and i intend to nap after i finish this blog. take that body! you WILL be rested.

we had a great, great, great engagement party for elizabeth and jeremy. we loves them and we can't wait to get them married! 6 months to go!! it will be here before we all know it. they are going to have a fabulous winter wonderland wedding so we tried to incorporate some snowflakes to the party decor. we had fun with GLITTTTTTTTTER and fake snow (batting!). i am pretty sure it was a SUCCESSFUL party. karl and i stayed until about 10:30... my feet couldn't take it anymore!

nora nate has been real quiet these last few days. she is running out of room in there so the movement isn't quite as violent, and (i hope) she is resting up for labor and delivery. i wish it were today. i packed our bags! (ish.)

any time now baby. i'm starting to get tired of having to be helped off the couch, into the car, down stairs, picking things up, driving, doing NORMAL things. i am just glad i didn't pull the PREGGO CARD this whole time b/c now i feel a LITTLE less guilty about needing lots of HELP! ha.

38 weeks, 2 days



this is a leek. yum yum yum. (oh wait till you see next weeks! it begins with a W!!)

nora nate had a rough night last night. (and me too. i watched sports center's baseball tonight about eight times, drifting in and out and barely slept. i had a dream i was on a dock and that i tied my i-phone to a construction crain pulley thinking it would be 'safe' and the crain lifted it up, up, up and away and i cried and cried. WHAT? ugh. i try not to complain much, but last night seriously sucked.)

needless to say, i was late for work this morning. i felt guilty about it for a minute and then decided I NEED SLEEP and stayed in bed till about 10 am! i have decided and discussed with my boss - i will be taking some half days next week. there is NO WAY if i had gone into labor last night i could have birthed a baby after the day i had yesterday ... i was just too exhasted (and the day was super stressful and i don't need all that nonsense.)

the cardinals and the red sox are on TV tonight so maybe i will get some much needed rest and recooperation.

38 weeks.


it's a FULL MOON!

roxy missed being blogged about. she told me.

i have this sweater in three colors - pink, brown, black. yep, i will be wearing one of them EVERY DAY until delivery. thank you, target.

i am watching baseball! cubs and tampa bay. i really can't get enough baseball. it's the only thing i want to do. weird.

it is a full moon (some say lots of babies come on full moons!) but nary a pain for me and minimal mini-contractions today so don't think the full moon is going to provide any, um, help with the whole starting labor thing.

i did make karl walk me. (and the dogs.)

oh, and i will officially be closing the baby pool on friday. CLOSED. i believe i have $12 more dollars bringing the total to $80. i will update all the payments and guesses on Friday. if you haven't paid by then, well, you get no monies if you win and it will go to the next closest guesser. guesses are starting to go by, so i think it is probably only (probably only?) fair to close it.

i. can't. stop. blogging.

or eating.

37 weeks, 5 days


tuesday is doctor day! yea!

no news. same amount of progress. (yep, i decided to get checked! i couldn't resist!) i fell asleep in the exam room waiting for the doctor (sans pants!) and he laughed at me. a lot. so no news is good news! baby is still basting.

let's see: what else would i like to discuss besides pregnancy?

  • There are lots of rumblings about gas prices. This is an interesting CNN tech link - how much do you have to work to fill your tank? You don't have to tell me your answer, but I find the link interesting. Karl and I currently carpool (together, ugh.) and we drive my car and the truck on the weekends. we both fill up our tanks ABOUT one time per month! (sometimes I have to do two.) (one advantage of small town living!) So we haven't been terribly affected (effected? crap. which one is it!?! affect is the verb one?!? sorry, sister patricia (first grammar teacher), i think i have failed here) by prices at the pump. how bout you?
  • Some people are making a comeback in the blogosphere: karl, melissa p. (google reader is ridiculously helpful for keeping track of all blog updates. really, it will change your blog habits! i subscribe to over 100 blogs and it takes me about 15 minutes a day to check them all! only downside, it doesn't read private blogs and sometimes has issues with some RSS feeders).
  • Additionally, we bought the domain name: www.karlandkat.com and it points to the bloggity blog. i have no idea who checks this thing, but welcome all old and new.
  • Elizabeth and Jeremy's engagement party is this weekend! I did some cute invites - i will post them after the party! WITH PICTURES. i can't wait. 6 months till their wedding!!!
  • THE CARDINALS ARE NEVER ON TV HERE. AND IT PISSES ME OFF because I AM NOT PAYING for some stupid MLB subscription package. my late pregnancy craving/comfort is watching baseball - seriously not kidding. i look for games every night. i am watching the astros and orioles right now. AND i hate the astros!! someone SERIOUSLY come up with a solution to this problem. ESPN shows stupid poker, but no MLB. Like they don't make enough money to show some freaking games on television. AND THE CARDINALS ARE GOOD. and they need to catch up to the cubs!
  • my ankles are disgusting. AND i threw up this morning! (it hurt - my abs no workey!)
  • i am getting less and less productive at work. help.
  • we DID order those kitchen cabinets. guess when they get here? july 2. HAHAHAHA!
37 weeks, 4 days


she still looks pretty high to me

get down baby. d-o-w-n.

thanks for listening to my birth plan post. i know whatever happens it will be great. and i would like to reiterate i know how lucky we are to be low-risk and healthy. i wish THAT upon everyone!

not much to tell about the weekend. my feet are still swollen. blood pressure is still fine. i found a swimming pool and that seemed to help. i am dreading going to work tomorrow. now i understand why women quit before it's time! i dread sitting at home waiting, but i also dread sitting at work swelling! my goal is a full week this week and maybe three days next week and two half days. i don't know.

the baby could be here anytime! today is the first guess of the baby pool (sorry jenny don't think it is happening today!)

Hope everyone had a great weekend! I LOOK HUGE! (and i must brag i still feel pretty darn great - sleeping isn't so comfortable but i was in a great mood all day today!) ANOTHER DOC APPOINTMENT TUESDAY! Will report back STAT.

37 weeks, 2 day


and the happy fun preggo vibes return

here is the baby size for WEEK 3-7.

know what it is?

a swiss chard.



the first guess of the baby pool is this sunday. ha! i have an additional $17 to the pot so we are now at a total winnings of $77! Somebody's getting lucky!

i just ate sticky fingerz: hard garlic fingerz and fries slathered in creamy dill sauce. and a coke. pretty much i am worthless now. if you come to town, i will take you there. the creamy dill sauce is to die for. my coworkers and i banned it from our diets b/c i am pretty sure it isn't the healthiest but we lifted the ban today in celebration of, um, friday i guess. and i wonder why i KEEP GAINING WEIGHT. haha. (and it so isn't the baby. the baby hasn't gained five pounds in one week so don't even try and tell me i have an excuse. haha!)

37 weeks.


neither for packing nor playing

dear god.

so, karl and i haven't really gotten a lot of baby GADGETS and STUFF THAT MUST BE ASSEMBLED. we are really trying to KEEP IT SIMPLE with this whole baby business. i would say the two things we have gotten are these: the PnP (as the babyworld abbreviates - standing for Pack N Play which i shall discuss momentarily) and our carseat (clearly a necessity).

of these two things with multiple plastic bags, directional bibles, and a crap ton of plastic parts, both were incorrect. WHAT ARE THE ODDS? the PnP had a wheel part missing. (trust me. it's missing.) the carseat comes with these 4 plastic 'poles' to make you a little sun shade - we got three of one kind; one of the other when we need two of each. glorious. both parts are 'on the way.' i mean, really, do you think i want to call baby manufacturers all day long!? um, NO! and they, clearly, want to talk to me even less.

and, as a BONUS, i have discovered i am even MORE inept at putting things together than i previously suspected. that doesn't bode well for our future child's christmas presents. i mean, really, how is my child going to survive!?

regardless, the PnP is adorable. giraffes for brooke. it fits NO WHERE in our bedroom. or our house for that matter. (is it wrong that i was trying to keep the baby stuff to a minimum? our house is so tiny; i don't want baby gear to overwhelm it (or me!)). additionally, i don't really understand where you PACK it to go. it would take like four hours to pack. it has like 800 parts. and it's heavy! AND it doesn't even fit through half our doorways, so it's not like i can wheel it around all easy like throughout the house. (would one even do that?!) i have to take off eight parts just to get it from the bedroom to the living room. this distresses me. ah, well, i still love it. a lot. i mean, it has an MP3 player plug in. it vibrates. the baby NEEDS to listen to music, right?

ok, on to the BIRTH PLAN since it has garnered much interest and a few questions. (this is going to be a long blog. kudos if you have made it this far! you will get a cookie at the end if you make it. mmmmm cookies.)

i am going to say this once and once only. please don't be offended by anything as this is the way
WE (as in karl and kat) are planning on 'doing birth' and neither of us would ever care what any other person on this whole planet chose to do with their own birth. (serously, if you want an elective c-section, you go for it! it's your health, decision, and child.) (disclaimer over.)

and please god if you don't have kids, don't let the following scare you; it's not that big a deal. it's simply (to me) a matter of doing research. you research a new house and new cars, right? pretty much any new product you buy, you research. so you probably should your medical care to a certain extent as well, right? i barely go to the doctor and they seem to mess things up. I am responsible for my health care, not the Western medical model. (i will be an informed consumer and choose doctors who support that thank you very much.)

so, anyway, a birth plan, basically is a written document that you go over with your care providers before you go into labor and delivery. basically, it is a list of your wants and desires for labor. the phrase 'birth plan' does not mean 'natural birth.' it can include wanting an epidural, not wanting one, wanting a specific/different drugs than the 'norm', wanting NO drugs, wanting to labor in bathtubs or showers (some hospitals do not let you do this), wanting people in the room with you, wanting to be monitored internally or externally, wanting a vacuum vs. forceps, wanting your baby immediately cleaned or immediately put to the breast if possible, wanting a hep lock vs. a full IV, and the list can go on and on. again, i will reiterate it is a
plan. and plans change. (i think most birth plans probably change especially as every labor is going to be different, right? some are an hour. some are twenty hours.)

so here is my deal with the birth plan. it's really more for me and my own confidence than any doctor anyway. do you know what pitocen is? do you know what cytotec is? do you know what demoral is? do you know what stadol is? do you know what antibiotics the hospital requires you to be on if you test positive for Group B Strep. do you know what Group B strep is (the CDC requires preggo ladies to be tested for it)? do you know what the differences b/w forceps and vacuum extraction are (do you know which your doctor prefers)? do you know what an epidural is? do you know how an epidural is inserted? do you know what pre-eclampsia and magnesium are? do you know how long your doctor will let you go without inducing? do you know what meconium is? do you know the side effects of any of these choices? do you know the effects of drugs as they cross the placenta (cause they will. don't take anything stronger than tylenol during pregnancy but have some heavy narcotics at the end! oh, sorry, veering off the path). do you know how long you want to wait before going to the hospital if your water breaks at home? do you know what a VBAC is? does your husband or partner know what any of these things and would he or she be able to help you make a decision about them?

pretty much i knew nothing about any of this.

so i did my research. and i feel much better now.

so, briefly, let's talk about interventions. most research shows one intervention leads to another. for example, maybe you just want an epidural but maybe your epidural isn't going to be the only drug you take or the hospital suggests you take. maybe you want additional drugs before your epidural. (and these drugs might confine you to a bed when you want to be up and walking around.) and i think, before i take a drug, i want to know what it is and what it does. and i am not going to take the doctors or nurses word for it without questions. so, in a nutshell, that is why i have a plan. (plus, well, you all know i am a leeetle, um, plan-ey. a nice way of saying a control freak!? ha! in this case, honestly, i just feel like i am being logical and realistic.) so, even if we wind up having a slew of drugs, i will be informed and know what they are and what they do.

as part of our birth plan (and, no, i am not sharing my whole plan on the blog; i will say it is a short and simple page or so and we intend to remain drug and intervention free. and we remain flexible and open minded about it changing. if you want to see it, send me an email, i will share.) i have hired a doula. she knows what all those drugs and interventions are WAY better than i do (even after all my research), and she will be there to help me and to help me and karl make informed decisions. for some reason i am not seeing myself being so clear headed when a baby is pushing its way through my body. and, trust me, she is not one to push one way or the other. she will help us to decide as a team.

most importantly, that includes making decisions WITH our doctor. is it so wrong to want to be a part of your care and not just let the doctor tell you what to do? it is okay to decline things at the hospital. (i swear people don't know this!)

so, all this being said, i just want to feel comfortable with my decisions regarding childbirth. i will let you know how it goes. (obviously). i have been fortunate enough to have a very healthy, happy pregnancy with no issues. some women are not so lucky, and i realize this, and am thankful for my own health. no matter what happens, i am not going to be upset as long as WE decided to do it for US and our baby. so call me crazy, overly prepared, nuts, a control freak...heck, go on and tell me i can't do it if you want to (and oh so many have! that is why i don't talk about it). i don't mind. at this point, no one can bother me!

just DON'T tell me i look like i am wearing A FAT SUIT like a dude did at work today.

okay, that is all. (whew, it took me all day to write that!) light hearted blogging to return tomorrow with a new 37 week (FULL TERM!) fruit. you can't wait, right?

36 weeks, 6 days


oh and i forgot to mention

i got a new wedding ring! my little turtle friend will be joining me and karl in matrimony for the last few weeks of pregnancy.

36 weeks, 5 days


doctor update

i had my first INTERNAL exam today. (do you even want to know this!?!?)

i told doc i thought i would be right on time or late and he said that was a good attitude to have.

then he checked me and said i was PROGRESSING. he didn't say pack your bags (i need to do that anyway), but he seemed a bit surprised. pleasantly so.

1 cm dilated. 80% effaced. a-par-antly this is good. i'm not buying it!

i can choo-choo-choo-choooose whether i want another internal next week. should i have one or just wait it out!? there isn't really a REASON for them other than to tell you if you are making more progress. do i need to know that? i mean, baby is coming one way or another right?

i also went over my BIRTH PLAN with him. he liked it and said he was confident i could have whatever i wanted when it came to labor and delivery. booooosh. i am woman. right? :)

i had my work shower this afternoon. pictures to follow. again with the generosity. i am all weepy lately and it was awesome. we are done with showers. this baby is SPOILT already.

AND AND, speaking of weepy, elizabeth and kristen and katie SURPRISED me with an hour MASSAGE this afternoon. how freaking awesome is that?!!?! heavenly. this baby mama is spoilT as well.

now, what shall we do to SPOIL poor karl? i know! i will LET him put together some baby stuff. maybe even do baby laundry. or cook me dinner.

nora nate is kicking away as i type. i feel selfish b/c i get to feel it all and everyone else just gets a kick here and there. surely this is the saddest part of pregnancy. i REALLY want to share it with EVERYONE. it is such a fabulous sensation. i think i shall miss it. (and that is why all pregnant women want all their friends to get pregnant!)

36 weeks, 4 days (i just tried to type 32 weeks; DENIAL much?)


mom and dad were here!

it is startling. the growth. i can't feel it per say, and then i look at pictures and realize i actually have gotten bigger. and then i think i still have a month-ish to go! cripes. i am trying to give you a variety of angles since you all don't see me every day and i know pics can be deceiving. plus, i try not to post the ridiculously hideous pictures.

my feet and ankles are still swollen on and off. the sad thing is: it goes down, but it never entirely goes away. i MISS my ankle bones. i have been assured they will return immediately following delivery and that shit better not be a lie. this is way more annoying than contractions, crap skin, and the infrequent bloody noses!

momma and poppa horan (grandma and grandpa?! HAHA!) were here in THE ROCK this weekend to enjoy the fabulous arkansas weather. er.

we enjoyed just hanging out. watching big brown's unsuccessful run for the triple crown and spending some time in the baby's room. they are almost grandparents to an outside baby.

what do we think: grandma linda, grandpa mike? what do you call your grandparents? karl's already have a plethora (10) of grandchildren so they are solidly GiGi and Paw-Paw. Just plain old grandma and grandpa is all we ever used in my family. Works for me. Maybe we will just let nora nate decide.

picture of karl just because he rarely gets blog play anymore. well, other than the inside baby that is half of him. ha.

36 weeks, 2 days


yay for contractions!

oh honeydew. how i love you.

let's talk contractions. i have been having lots of them. the little fake ones that don't hurt. for maybe a month/few weeks now. for me (everyone is different, of course) they are mainly on one side and it gets all sorts of tight and hilarious looking (in the sense it becomes even MORE lopsided than one would think possible). there is definately no mistaking them that is for sure. usually MORE WATER makes them go away. at least they make me feel like SOMETHING is happening.

i need two things from you:

1. some relaxing music suggestions for this last month... for helping me sleep before baby gets here, for helping me relax during early labor, for helping me relax after delivery while i have to stay in the un hospital. i have never stayed in a hospital before. i am a little apprehensive about it. music might help, right? right. (humor me anyway! burn me cds if you have something extra-special.)

2. (mainly for the baby mamas out there). what was your MOST NEEDED hospital bag item? i guess i am going to pack one (holy crap!).

i am sleepy.

the red wings suck (i almost stayed awake during the 3OTs of the stanley cup finals last night but didn't quite make it!). i want neither team to win, so i don't know why i even bother watching!

we might be getting new kitchen cabinets in the next few weeks. and maybe new floors before the baby comes. i think we might be crazy.

good night (moon).

i tried to get karl to tell me something interesting to blog about. he's got nothing.

i could share with you some interesting tidbits from our baby class. um. we talk about birthing positions a lot. that probably isn't that interesting to you. we DID have an entertaining swaddling the taco-baby lesson (during which time i thought 'what the hell am i doing here!?!? i can't have a baby!')

i did actually take some video of the baby moving but my camera ate it. and many other pics. (first time i have EVER lost anything from a memory card - most of the images were already moved to my computer, but it was still tragic.) i will try again. nora nate was shy for the camera. (me must fix that immediately, right?!)

i have talked about nothing long enough. go about your business.

35 weeks, 4 days


some things that will not be gone before baby gets here

i was thinking today about some recent purchases we have made that will DEFIN-A-TELY still be around when the baby comes. i have featured them here. it's weird to think about (i guess NOT everything will change around the house, eh? it's probably not REALLY that weird, but i think it might have taken this to make me realize how soon this thing is coming out of me. yep. soon.) UNLESS, i guess, i do over 64 loads of laundry (DOUBTFUL!!!), wash my hair 18 thousand times, my husband uses an extraordinary amount of hair gel... like A LOT (now that would be weird), or i force feed us pancakes for every meal b/w now and then.

i am including my 35 week belly picture. i love being pregnant but i am missing feeling 'normal." let's just say it is a good thing i didn't pull the 'pregnancy card' with karl early on, because let me tell you, i actually need it sometimes now! for the record, he has been great about running in stores/running errands (honestly, at this point, it is faster without me!), getting me water (or gatorade or ice to help reduce swelling!), and oh-so-much-more.

i have been working on my thank you cards for recent gifts we have received. i promise yours is either written and in the mail or will be written soon. (and now that i have typed that statement, it shall happen!) my arm is falling off. people's generosity = still overwhelming. it is hard to be personal on all of them but dangit i am trying!!!

i don't go back to the doctor until the 10th (yikes! that feels far!) because they said there is no reason for me to come before then. that is my SWAB (ew. swab is a weird word.) for GSB and my first 'internal' (pelvic exam) as they say in OB language. fun, huh? oh, yea, lots of fun starting!! i promise to try and be honest with you all about it. (without grossing you out by sharing too many of the details!)

35 weeks, 2 days