June 2012

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Growing, Hair Cut, and Teeth

September 3, 2011 - I can always tell my babies are growing by how big their cheeks start to get and how their clothes start to get too small. Well, Aria has already started outgrowing her going home outfit. She is getting too tall :) Also, her cheeks are getting bigger by the second. I love it!

September 3, 2011 - Eve finally got her first haircut and did fabulous! She got to have a sucker and watch Thomas. She was so excited and stood super still! Something about Eve - she loves to get her hair done. So, I am not too surprised that she did well when getting her hair trimmed. She is such a cute girl!

Waiting for the sucker

Posing pre-haircut

The first cut

Watching Thomas intently

Post-haircut do!
Eve has gotten teeth super fast! I can't believe it! Here are the dates:
#13 - Bottom L canine - April 23 (Happy Birthday Uncle Jared)
#14 - Bottom R canine - April 26
#15 - Top L canine - June 19
#16 - Top R canine - July 23
#17 - Bottom L 2/3 year molar! - September 6ish (yes, she is getting teeth fast and early - at least we only have 3 more molars to go)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Vacuums, Videos, and Aria Stats & Facts

Here are some stats and interesting facts about little Aria:

Birth weight: 6 pounds, 9 ounces
Dropped to: 6 pounds, 6 ounces
August 22, 2011 (3 days old): 6 pounds, 8.6 ounces (just about birth weight) - nurses very impressed
September 1, 2011: Had to go in because belly button had some puss, but turned out to be completely normal. Weight: 7 pounds, 4 ounces
September 7, 2011 (2-week check-up): Weight: 7 pounds, 8 ounces - 25%; Height: 20 1/2 inches - 50%; Head Circumference: 13 3/4 inches - 25%

During her first weeks of life Aria has seen more natural disasters than most! Here is the list (Note: the first 2 happened in her first week):

August 23, 2011 - 5.9 Earthquake - slept through the whole thing
August 27-28, 2011 - Hurricane - slept through the whole thing
September 6-9, 2011 - Tropical Storms - was awake for some of the rain, but wasn't bothered by it

August 26, 2011 - I always enjoy watching the struggle my kids have at waking up when they are just itsy bitsy. It's just so cute! Enjoy the videos :)

August 26, 2011 - Aria being woken up by her siblings and Eve saying Aria so cute!

August 31, 2011 - We went to the church so Tyson could get some church stuff done. He had some checks to print out and such. Reed, Eve, Aria, and I went into the nursery and played and played. Who knew the vacuuming could be so fun?! Reed and Eve loved it!! Maybe I should take them there more than once a week :)

Friday, September 9, 2011

Baby Aria

Well, life at home with Aria has certainly been a lot of fun! The kids have loved holding her, squishing her, giving her loves, and just being around her. They almost love her too much :) It's hard to believe that she is already 3 weeks old! It's been such a time warp. The days go slow, but fast. Tyson has been able to stay home for these past 3 weeks, and I am so grateful! There are many pros to working for a "Big Four" company. The benefits are fabulous! Monday is going to be a hard day for everyone!

Aria has grown a ton and is doing really well. I am still getting used to being up in the night to feed her. That is always the hardest part for me - so hopefully she will keep growing fast and be sleeping through the night as soon as she is able. She is such a sweet heart. There is something about when she looks at you - I feel like she can actually see who I am at this point. I just love her so much! Hard to believe that I can love all 3 of my children with the same amount of love. It still boggles my mind. Well, enjoy these pictures of Aria from the rest of August :)

Eve was SO EXCITED to hold HER baby.

Getting ready for loves....

Loves :)

Sleeping - a favorite past time

First bath at home - of course, there was a big audience. Oh, notice Jared in the background. He came to visit from the 20th-23rd. It was fun for the kids to see Uncle Jared and play with him!

An awake photo!

Her eyes are so calm and just a beautiful, deep blue!


She is almost as hard to wake up as Eve was.

I believe Reed took this picture...not bad!

Another Reed favorite

Do you sense a pattern? I love how her arm is up!

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Birth Story

Here is the birth story of Aria Janae Walker. For those who don't want to read all the details, here is a synopsis:

Aria Janae Walker was born on Friday, August 19, 2011 at 3:32 a.m. She was 6 pounds, 9 ounces and 19.7 inches long. She had a full head of very dark/black hair and dark blue eyes. She passed all tests in the hospital and was home by 1:30 p.m. on August 20th. Mom and baby are doing well :)

Here is the story with all the fun and not-so-fun details, for those who are interested:

On Wednesday, August 17th, I started having some contractions in the evening. With Eve I had contractions and she was born the same day, so we thought it would be the same way. Well, it wasn't. My contractions were about every 12 minutes, but were not getting any closer together or any stronger. So, we decided to stop timing and went to bed. My contractions completely stopped (at least I think they did, because I was able to sleep). But, we had called my mom who was supposed to be flying out Thursday morning for Kristy's wedding reception in Las Vegas that was happening on Friday night. So, she ended up changing her flight to Friday morning so that she could hopefully be here for the birth (she missed the first 2 and did not want to miss the 3rd). I felt a little bad because I was worried the baby would come after my mom left.

So, my mom showed up at our house on Thursday morning and helped me get a few last minute things done - cleaning the walls, dusting, playing with the kids. Throughout the day, I guess I had a few contractions, but nothing near as consistent as Wednesday and nothing hard enough for me to even call them contractions.

My mom was determined to get the baby here, so in the afternoon we went on a walk and she made me do some jumping jacks. I bet I looked really silly. I did have some contractions when I started walking too fast, so maybe it helped, but I am not sure. I think the baby was just going to come when she was ready. Oh, I forgot to mention that Thursday was the 18th and my parents' wedding anniversary (so, my mom really wanted her to be born on her anniversary). Anyways, by the time dinner rolled around, I can say that I think labor had started. I was having light contractions and was still able to eat and drink (something I cannot do in hard labor because I always throw it up), so nothing super major, but I felt like it was starting to progress a little.

We put the kids to bed and then I just laid on the couch and we started timing contractions. They were about 10 minutes apart and then they jumped to about 8 minutes apart, then 7 1/2 minutes apart. Tyson was getting a little antsy because we waited almost too long with Eve (had my water broken, I probably would have had her in the car). I also was passing my mucus plug and it was a little bloody, so my mom was getting nervous. I did not think it was time to call the doctor, but everyone seemed to think so. Also, I was not sure if my water had broken or was leaking because I seemed to be losing a lot of liquid. With Reed I had a fluid leak and did not know it, so that it what really made me want to call the doctor.

I talked to the doctor and he told me to go in to the hospital and check to see if my water had broken. By this time it was about 11 p.m. So, my friend, Jana, came over to sleep at our house and take the kids in the morning (Thanks, again!) and my mom, Tyson, and I headed to the hospital. I felt a bit weird because I knew that I was heading to the hospital too early (for me). I was still in a pretty good mood and was still laughing at jokes. This is too early for me because it means I am not in my super serious mode yet. However, my serious mode, when labor gets tougher and tougher, goes pretty fast from serious to the doubting phase (where I think I can't do it anymore) which means the baby is coming within the hour. So, I can see why Tyson was antsy to get to the hospital.

We checked in and went to triage. My mom was not allowed in triage - only 1 person is allowed, but it is usually pretty fast, so she just went down to the lobby. They checked me and I was dilated to a 5. I knew we had gone too early. But, I was in active labor, so they said I could stay since I would be back in about 45 minutes anyways. My water had not broken.

Well, apparently, we chose the busiest night to have a baby because labor and delivery rooms were all full. I had to sit in triage for 3 hours!! That is what almost broke me because triage is just no fun. You are separated by a curtain from all the other ladies and the machines are quite loud and annoying. You hear mixes of nurses and moans and scream. It is just really hard to concentrate and relax - what I do to get through labor without medication. It was especially bad because the lady right next to me was moaning and screaming and complaining like the baby was about to be born. Then they checked her and said, "Well, you have made some progress. You are now dilated to a 2." Yeah, I was shocked and kind of wanted to tell her to stop complaining. The nurse even went in and said, "You have got to relax. The contractions are not going away. You have to breath through them." The lady said she was and the nurse replied, "No, you are not." That made me laugh because the nurse was right. I could hear it in the lady's voice without even seeing her.

Anyways, concentrating and relaxing became more and more difficult the longer I was in there. Also, the lights were a bit annoying to me this time. I wish I could have turned mine off. By the time a bed was available for me, I was in my doubting phase. I was exhausted from the day, hadn't really been able to relax like I would have liked, and didn't know how far I was dilated. I was caving.

We got to the room and I asked how long it would take for medicine to get to me. They said about 45 minutes. I remember saying that I think I wanted it, but deep down I knew that it would get to me in time. The doctor came in and checked me. I was a 9+ and my water still had not broken. He broke my water and I dilated right to a 10. I am actually glad that I was that far along. Anything less and I probably would have gotten medicine and would have felt gross (medicine and I don't really do well together). The doctor told me to push when I felt like pushing. I was happy he said that because my other experiences have been the doctor telling me to push when I didn't feel the urge to push. Thus, I did not do a very good job for the first part of pushing.

I think I started pushing about 15 minutes later. I felt this pressure in my back and knew it was time. I started pushing and the nurses called the doctor. Apparently it all went fast because she started to crown and the doctor was not there yet. The nurses told me to stop pushing and I seriously wanted to kick them. That was, by far, the most painful part. My being the obedient patient, I stopped pushing but almost started sobbing/panting to stop myself because it hurt so bad. It felt like an eternity of waiting for the doctor. The ring of fire really is real!

When the doctor got there he said he was going to do an episiotomy, but he didn't have the time because I was not holding back my pushing anymore.  I pushed and out she came - no forceps (used with Reed) and no vacuum (used with Eve). I tore a little bit, but I really didn't care at that point. I was just happy that I could push and have the baby.

Immediately after Aria was born, I remembered about the placenta. Last time my uterus contracted around my placenta and it didn't want to come out. That was the most painful part of Eve's delivery and didn't want that to happen again. So, we told the doctor and he was on top of making sure my placenta came out quickly. I didn't see it, but my mom said that he put a need in the umbilical cord (after it was cut, of course) and drained some blood out of the placenta to make it a bit smaller. Thankfully, it came out with no problems and I got stitched up.

The comments from the nurses in triage, labor and delivery, and the doctor were something to this effect, "I can't believe that you didn't scream. You were so calm the entire time. You made it look easy." What can I say? I guess I am not a screamer. It doesn't give me any more energy, it just drains me. Instead I like to relax and concentrate on letting my body work the way it is supposed to work. And yes, I felt like a rock start afterwards - gotta love the endorphins that rush in after birth!

So, I already put the info at the top, but Aria Janae Walker was born at 3:32 a.m. on August 19, 2011 - my 5-year anniversary! She was 6 pounds, 9 ounces, and was 19.7 inches long. She still has her dark hair and blue eyes - although they (her eyes) seem to be lightening up in the middle just a bit. My mom finally got to be at the birth of one of my children. I am sure she was exhausted for the next week, but I am really glad that she was there.

We stayed at the hospital for a little over a day. I really don't like staying in hospitals, and like to be home with my kids. Reed and Eve came to visit the baby and were just so excited! They loved holding her and also enjoyed that she gave them each a train (Reed got Percy and Eve got Molly). I loved that they could come because when Eve was born it was in the middle of flu season. Reed was not allowed to come and see her in the hospital. So, it was fun to get a family photo with everyone in the hospital.

Well, that's that - the birth story. I am sure I have missed a few details, but all the important stuff is there. I will be updating more about this cute little baby! Enjoy the hospital pictures - there are lots!

Just after birth:

Reed and Eve come to visit:

Going home:

Thursday, September 1, 2011

WWII Memorial with Grandpa Dalling

My Grandpa Dalling fought in WWII. It's not something he talks about much, and I can see why. There are a few things that I know. He was called "Boomerang" because he, unlike many in his troop (or platoon or whatever the appropriate name is) always seemed to come back alive. Thus, he was always sent out first. He was very athletic and was always in dangerous places. He was one of the few soldiers to survive the Battle of Normandy (I can't even imagine seeing that and being somewhat normal after that). He also had 3 of his fingers blown off due to a grenade (I think) and he still has shrapnel inside his body. He has earned many awards including the Purple Heart. Basically, he is a complete hero! Plus, he came back from the war to his wife and child and lived out a fairly normal life. Despite the losses and tragedies he saw, he turned out to be one of the kindest and gentle people I have ever met.

While my grandparents were here for Kristy's wedding, my dad took them to see many of the sights. My grandpa had not been to D.C. since he was there being shipped out overseas during WWII and I'm not sure if my grandma has ever been to D.C. They were both amazed and loved the things they saw. As you can imagine, my grandparents are very patriotic and take the freedoms we have very seriously.

We were able to join up with them on Monday, August 15th to go see the WWII Memorial. This is still my favorite memorial, especially at night, and has a more special meaning after being there with my grandpa. I know that he was just amazed at everything and all the detail that has gone into this memorial.

I walked with him down the ramp and we stopped at some of the engraved pictures that you see walking in. He stopped at the one depicting the Battle of Normandy and just got really quiet. I wonder exactly what he was thinking. As he looked at other pictures, we would explain something about it that applied to him -- simply amazing.

We slowly walked around the whole memorial and he paused at the gold stars. It hit me again how many people we lost during WWII. It was almost the most Americans we have ever lost in a war (besides the Civil War, I believe). It was just a very humbling evening for me. I am so grateful to my grandpa and all the other soldiers that risked and gave their lives for my freedoms. Great night!

Lights just coming on

Grandpa Dalling and my dad

My family with Grandpa Dalling

My grandpa fought on the Atlantic

Even though they don't understand quite what these stars mean yet, Reed and Eve loved them.

Playing with daddy

I love this shot!

Another great view


Capturing my grandpa telling stories