I’m finding it harder and harder to write these days. It’s not that I don’t want to, or need to. I have the thoughts in the head. I just seem to find myself filling my time with other activities… Maybe once we get back into a routine I’ll find more time. Below is what’s going on in our lives!

  • Thanksgiving was fun! Eric and I hosted at our new home. He smoked a turkey, I made some sides and my mother brought a bunch of food as well, and my sister too. It was a small gathering, just 6 adults and 4 kids, but it was nice, and fun. But in true form, the day went way too quickly. And I was so busy I didn’t take a single picture the entire day. Ugh. As you know how much I love pictures. On to Christmas I guess! I better start shopping!
  • Speaking of our new home… I’m still in the process of unpacking and decorating. It’s supposed to be fun, right? Why does it feel like work?? Our Christmas tree has been up almost a week, and yet still stands with only lights… Maybe today?
  • I went yesterday to get some ideas for window treatments. What are your thoughts on shutters? We have white trim, so probably something similar to this picture. Would you do the entire house in these? Bedrooms too?fullsizeoutput_17b9
  • Nadia had her 15 month (12 month adjusted) checkup this past Monday. I’m totally mom of the year, she has an ear infection and I had no idea. She’s been teething and cranky lately, but I guess I just figured it was her teeth and nothing more. I did ask her pediatrician about continuing physical and speech therapy. Her thoughts were… lets hold off for now. Nadia is babbling more, and says a few words. Also, she is close to walking, as she currently walks around furniture quite a bit. Her recommendation was to see how well she walks once she does. Our PT in Cedar Falls thought she felt some tightness in one leg, but our pediatrician wasn’t able to find that. So for now, I guess we’ll see. I trust our pediatrician, as she has lots of preemie experience but I also recognize she is not specifically trained in physical or speech therapy.RX99vTMmVzPUA1jdGrQ
  • At Nadia’s checkup we also discussed the cyst on her foot again. It started on the bottom of her heel shortly after birth, but now as her foot is growing it seems to be positioned more on the back edge of her heel. Our ped and Eric both agree it was caused by so many heel sticks in the NICU for blood tests. My understanding is its dead skin cells stuck under the skin. It seems to be getting larger so needs to be removed, otherwise the fear is it will bother her when walking with shoes. Problem is… with children, they like to put them out, as it will involve cutting and stitches. Ugh. Eric wants to do it at home. I said no way!
  • Girls are healthier this week and back to ‘school’ as we call it. Nora seems pretty excited to go each day, although is still a little weary of me leaving. Nadia on the other hand, screams as soon as we walk into her room. Yesterday her teacher did send me a few cute pictures of her playing. So she must not cry the entire day! Neither of the girls are napping well there, in fact, Nora hasn’t napped at all this week. So bedtime is fun. And she isn’t doing as well sleeping through the night either lately like she used to. I hope we all adjust soon.
  • Eric has been gone since last Friday, and even with daycare help, parenting alone is hard. Really hard. A part of me hates all this responsibility. I have so much anxiety toward the girls eating, especially Nora. We are still relying on some bottles of Pediasure. Nadia is still taking a few bottles too of toddler formula, but she loves eating much more than Nora ever did!
  • I’m struggling with figuring out my purpose… This probably needs a post all its own… My original intention with daycare was to get the girls some socialization with other kids a few days a week. Everyone tells me though, that the girls will adjust much better if they have a consistent routine, meaning they should go everyday. Do you all agree? And if so, what the hell do I do all day? I can only decorate this house and consider working out so many hours a day. A job is the obvious answer. But I’m scared that would take me away from the girls too much, as I still normally get them from daycare late afternoon. And with Eric off every third week, I don’t want to be working during that time, as then I would never see him. I need a really flexible job. But no clue what that would be!

I’m sure I’m forgetting a million things I was going to mention, but I’ll leave you with a somewhat amusing story…

Yesterday morning I spent several hours remaking our bed. I had purchased a new memory foam mattress topper, a gel mattress pad, and new pillows. So I washed all the new stuff and put on a clean set of sheets as well. I was worn out, so I threw all the dirty stuff into a basket in our bedroom, vowing to do laundry soon. Yesterday afternoon the cleaners came. And put all the dirty stuff back on the bed and piled all the clean stuff in the laundry room. Only in my life, right??

Random Thoughts & Updates

  • Nora is getting faster and faster at crawling…  Time to actually close the baby gate at the top of our stairs I suppose!  And last night she sat from a crawling position!  So fun to watch her learn and change!  I still find myself behind on her weekly pictures, I haven’t taken this weeks yet…
  • I finally counted my frozen milk storage, and I’m pleasantly surprised that I have about 7,000 oz.  I’m so so so sick of pumping, so yesterday I started trying to stop.  I had been going up to 8 hours between sessions, so I’m going to try to be consistent and not pump more often than every 8-10 hours.  And currently I pump for around 15 mins each session, but I’m going to try to cut that down as well, this morning I pumped for 12.5 mins.  Hopefully I don’t end up with mastitis on something more awful from quitting too quickly.  Anyone have any advice on how to stop?
  • We are back to fortifying my milk for Nora as she’s gaining very, very slowly.  I weighed her a couple days ago and she was only up to 13 lbs 13.5 oz.  The high risk NICU followup team in Iowa City would like to see her gaining a bit faster, so hopefully fortifying helps.
  • Every now and again we try solid food with Nora, but so far she doesn’t seem much of a fan.  She happily opens her mouth to be spoon-fed or will feed herself whatever is on her tray, but as soon as it’s in her mouth her tongue pushes it out.  I guess you could say we are doing a combination of baby-led weaning and baby food.  And maybe she is just still too young, as she is just over 6 months adjusted now, but I’ve heard that preemies often have more issues with solids, so I’m a little worried.  For now I’m just going to keep trying solids with her every few days and ask her pediatrician about it at our next visit in a week or so.
  • Kona has been acting super jealous the past few weeks so I finally made an effort to get her more exercise and socialization.  I really miss Just Dogs Playcare in Coralville where Kona used to spend a few days a week, and I’ve been searching and searching for a place here…  And I found one, Happy Dogs Daycare.  First I must admit that the people are really amazing.  I was super impressed with both the owner and manager.  Their focus on safety really put me at ease.  The location though, and the facility, well, they leave a bit to be desired.  The building looks like it should be condemned.  And there is no parking lot other than a mud area behind the building where apparently the guests park.  Would it be rude to inquire about investing in a new facility for their business?  No seriously…
  • I went Christmas shopping yesterday and finally purchased a few gifts.  I have no idea what is wrong with me this year, but for the life of me I can’t seem to find suitable gifts for those on my list.  You’d think I have more time this year than any other year to search for the perfect gifts, but no, somehow the days are still flying by.  I think my problem is I’m finally realizing that Christmas is more than gifts, and thus I’d rather give something meaningful, but what that meaningful gift should be is difficult to find.  I wish my family would eliminate gifts for adults and just focus on being together and perhaps a few gifts for the kids.
  • Speaking of Christmas, I haven’t even purchased any gifts for Nora.  I think we’ve decided no visits to Santa this year, being the mall Santas are germ infested.  But what does one get their daughter for her first Christmas?  Again, I’d like something heartfelt, something I can look back on and remember that it was Nora’s first Christmas gift from her parents.
  • The tree is finally up, well, almost.  I purchased a larger artificial tree this year, along with ornaments that coordinate with the colors in our living room.  But apparently I had no idea just how large this tree is, as I ran out of decorations halfway through.  I’m still waiting for the rest to be delivered.  I’ll post a pic when it’s complete!
  • I’m still really enjoying getting to know the girls at my MOPs table better.  Last night we got together at one of the mom’s houses for a little Christmas gathering.  It was fun, we just sat around and chatted while sipping punch and enjoying Christmas goodies.  I took a Cranberry Orange Cheesecake that was very tasty!  And then this morning I met one of the moms for coffee who couldn’t make it last night.  Just nice to get out of the house and chat with others.  I cancelled our sitter this afternoon, as Eric was finished with cases at noon…  But he arrived home about one and immediately got a call to come back to see a patient.  Ugh.  It really never ends.
  • This afternoon I need to get my Christmas cards in the mail as FedEx just dropped them off, and then I was considering making Christmas cookies.  I might run out of energy soon though, day 4 of no caffeine, an experiment to see if Nora will nap better…

Weekly Pregnancy Update – 14 Weeks

How far along: 14w0d

Baby’s size: 3.98 inches, 2.47 oz., about the size of a pear.

Total weight gain: Up 2.8 lbs. from egg retrieval as I gained 2 lbs. in the last week.  I’m going to blame Thanksgiving 🙂

Maternity clothes: Same as last week, still in a mixture of regular and maternity pants, but most of my shirts and sweaters still fit me fine.

Stretch marks: Um, so get this…  I think I have some on my hips.  I have to assume they are more from gaining the weight from the fertility meds, as I haven’t really gained much since actually getting pregnant.  I kind of freaked when I noticed them.

Sleep: Had a few good nights of sleep lately, but it’s certainly still hit or miss.  I’m a stomach sleeper and I’m definitely feeling more uncomfortable when I do try to sleep on my stomach lately.

Symptoms/Feeling: I was too scared this weekend to skip the Unisom and B6, so not sure if I’m technically still experiencing nausea or not, as I feel pretty good for the most part on the meds.

Best moment of this week: When the nurse called last Wednesday morning to let me know our baby GIRL is healthy!  The MaterniT21 results showed no abnormalities.  So relieved.  And ecstatic it’s a girl.  Let the buying begin!

Miss anything: Breathing.  I feel like I’m so stuffy the past few weeks, and all I do is blow my nose!

Movement: Still too early, but looking forward to it!

Food cravings: Saturday for lunch I finally found my Hardee’s Hot Ham & Cheese.  So good!  Otherwise, no real cravings lately.  Still eating lots of oranges though.

Anything making you queasy or sick: As long as I take the Unisom and B6 I’m pretty good.  I do still gag sometimes when I take my vitamins…  Something about those.

Have you started to show yet: There is definitely something there, but I fear I just look fat, not pregnant.  Maybe it will be more pronounced in a few more weeks.

Gender: Apparently my instincts were right, it’s a girl!

Labor signs: Good God no!

Belly button in or out: In.

Wedding rings on or off: On.

Happy or moody most of the time: Yesterday I was moody.  Eric and I put up the tree, and there is just something about men…  Why do I feel like he kind of half-asses everything?  Like he will help me with the tree, but I have to go back and make it all pretty.  Maybe it’s a guy thing!

Looking forward to: Honestly, getting a little further on this house building project.  I’m anxious to finalize plans and actually start building so we can get a timeline in order.  The not knowing when we are moving is driving me crazy.  I’m still confused about what to do for a nursery in our current home.  Hopefully in a few more weeks I’ll have a better feel for how next year will go.  I just received a draft of the lower level this morning, but I’ll post separately with some of my thoughts.

Purchases for baby:  Oh gosh…  Way too much to mention with all the awesome Black Friday deals.  Although all purchases were made online, as I’m not that freaking crazy!  Basically anything marked as reserved from my registry was me…  Next big purchases will be the car seat and stroller I think.

Eric’s reactions:  Eric had a huge smile on his face when he realized our baby is a girl.  He and I both had last Wednesday off work.  He left early in the morning to run errands before the nurse called me at 7:36am to share the news.  I quickly ordered pink flowers to be delivered to my mother and then headed out to pick up a couple of cute girl baby items.  During my shopping rush Eric text to see if I wanted to meet at Village Inn for breakfast.  (What a place to share the news…)  Eric was already seated when I arrived, we quickly ordered and then I handed him the shopping bag of items.  He seemed a little confused at first, but then pulled out the pink pacifiers and with a huge smile on his face asked, ‘it’s a girl?’  That maybe wasn’t exactly how I always pictured telling him, but it’s certainly memorable!