Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Feeding, sleeping, and pacifiers... Oh My!

I never thought I could function on so little sleep. Yet here we are, enjoying each day on about 6 hours of sleep (not continuous though, at most we get 3 hours at a time). To think, only a month ago I was sleeping for 11-hour stretches!

So we have figured out pumping and bottle feeding. Steve is definitely up for father/husband of the year. He gave the first bottle last Thursday night, and it was a success. I definitely think Jack takes after his dad. He's very laid back about everything from how he eats to where he sleeps. He'll take a bottle or breastfeed without a problem. He'll sleep anywhere in the house. It's nice for us!

Sorry, I can't figure out how to get this right-side up. Just tilt your head, you'll get the idea!

So I knew being a mom was going to be different from anything else I have ever experienced, but I had no idea how much work it would be just to take a shower and eat my own lunch! We're slowly developing a routine though. Hopefully by the time I have to go back to work in April, we'll have something worked out.

So not everything is perfect here at the Barrett household. I don't want to fool anyone into thinking my son is perfect (just very close!). We are having some trouble with fussiness every once in a while. He's started taking a pacifier, which helps soothe him. I think he might get too tired some times and can't fall asleep. The pacifier seems to help in times like those.

Okay, this is way too much for the blog. I'm sure the last thing people want to read about is the minute details of our daily life. Hopefully, I'll be able to find time to take more photos of the little guy and get them posted here.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Mom's Favorite Photos

Okay, I'm getting a little tired trying to update each day. So I'll come back and do that later. Until then, here are a few of my favorite photos of our Buddy Bear (aren't we just too sickeningly sweet about our baby boy? Just humor me for now!)










And yes, this is only a few! I do have lots more!

Jan. 11 - Jack's Birthday!

Friday is when the excitement started. However, it didn't really start until Friday afternoon.

We had another doctor's appointment Friday at 11:15 or somewhere around there. We went. I had progressed a bit, but not that much. It turns out I am unique in my laboring process. The doctors didn't quite understand me. Even though my doctor didn't think I'd make it through the weekend (which he was right about!), we scheduled an induction for Thursday, Jan. 17. We left the office to wait for water, pain or blood since any one of those things meant going back to the hospital to have the baby!

We headed to Panera for lunch. I ate light considering I didn't know when I would go into active labor, and you really don't want a full stomach for active labor.

From there, we decided to go to Huntley Outlets to do a little shopping. We hit up the Maternity store one last time. We bought a little sleeper from Osh Kosh, and we found a bunch of cute little things for our son at Carter's. The last place I really wanted to go to before we went home was The Children's Place. So we walked over there, and about 5 steps from the doors I felt a gush. My water had broken. This was not as clear as it sounded, but I'm still not going to go into the details. We called the doctor to see if what I had experienced was indeed my water breaking, and she said go to the hospital. (by the way, I have several doctors, both male and female).

We stopped at the house to pick up the camera (we had everything else in the car). My smart husband had thought ahead and had taken Breyer to Ruffners, the doggie day care/kennel that morning, so all we had to do was make a phone call to keep her there overnight. We got to the hospital at about 4 p.m.

Labor and delivery stories are a little boring and often exaggerated. I'm going to spare the details here and just summarize. It was a wonderful experience. I would not describe it as extremely painful or horrible. In fact, most of my experience was very calm. If you want to know more, just ask.

Jack Reilley Barrett was born at 9:52 p.m. He weighed 7lbs 4 oz and was 21 inches long. Steve and my mom were with us in the delivery room. I'd highly recommend these two as birthing coaches if you ever are in need. We had lots of people in the waiting room too. Almost all of our immediate families were able to be there.

Of course, we have a ton of photos, but I don't want to clog the blog, so I'm only going to post a few here.

DSC_0009 Arriving at the hospital (yes, I am in labor!)

DSC_0022 Proud Dad and his son

DSC_0029 Our first family photo

For more photos, check out my Flickr site. If you aren't a part of the Barrett group yet, just email me.

Jan. 8, 9, 10 Catch Up

This was the day we first found out I was "in labor." I put that in quotes because it wasn't active labor. I was in the early stage of labor, and to my doctor's amazement I was not in any pain or discomfort. Most other first time moms with my measurements on this Tuesday are in the hospital asking for an epidural. I had been at work all day and didn't think anything unusual was going on!

I went home to relax and start timing contractions. Breyer knew something was up. She would come check on me if Steve or I called her. Otherwise, she ran to the basement and hung out on her couch. This picture is of Breyer and my belly resting on the couch in the basement.

My contractions did get to be about 5 minutes apart on this Tuesday night, so Steve and I went to the hospital. I was in denial that I was in actual labor. They kept us over night, but I didn't progress any. In the morning, we had to make the decision of whether to start inducing methods or to go home and wait it out. Since I was still only about 37 weeks, we decided to go home and wait it out. My doctor thought for sure we'd be back Wednesday afternoon. We were not. So started the labor waiting game!

Since early labor had started, my doctor ordered me not to work anymore. No problem! So we went home on Wednesday and took naps. It turns out as uncomfortable as I was trying to sleep with baby and contraction monitors on, Steve had it even worse in the reclining "Dad" chair. Neither of us had too much trouble napping on Wednesday.

On Thursday, Steve went in to work in the morning. I just hung around the house and rested. I really don't remember too much else from Thursday to be honest. I know I was getting a little cabin fever trying to figure out if my contractions were changing at all or if I was just looney. Not much really happened on Thursday.

Monday, January 07, 2008

So tired and a bathroom remodel

I was not very enthusiastic about going back to work today. Most of this lack of enthusiasm was caused by the realization that I could not just take a nap anytime I felt tired. That kind of freedom is such a blessing. I did take a nap after school today though, and it was lovely.

In my first big picture-a-day venture, I am actually over-achieving. The three things for today are:

The Bathroom Remodel
Steve has already done most of the demolition work for the remodeling of the hall bathroom. We had a guy come over tonight to take a look and give us an estimate on the putting-it-back-together part. Here are some photos of the bathroom in its current state.

Bathroom Demo 2

Bathroom Demo 1

Doggie Love
Breyer has been my shadow lately everywhere I go; but that does not mean she has lost any love for Steve. Here, Steve is watching the BCS Championship game and Breyer is letting him know she cares.

Breyer Love

Giving Thanks
I'm in the process of writing Thank You cards for all of the wonderful baby presents we have received so far. People are so generous it is almost overwhelming. I was trying to be artsy here with a pic of one style of thank-you that I am using.

Giving Thanks

Okay, that's it for today. Check back tomorrow night for another exciting update from West Dundee (especially since the Writer's Guild strike is still on, there's really nothing better to do!)

Sunday, January 06, 2008

New Year's Eve and Pics

I promised pictures, so I am delivering.

We celebrated New Year's Eve at our house with Cathy, Rob, Vita and Phil. It was low-key, but that's what I loved about it. Phil and Steve cooked dinner while the rest of us ate Vita's bruchette and chocolates I had from Christmas. We played some Foosball on the new table in the basement (there's nothing like the joy of scoring on Steve) and also played Dirty Minds.

Some other pictures I am including are from our family celebration of my mom's birthday. We gathered at Susie's house for brunch and cupcakes (seriously, what is better than brunch and cupcakes!). There are also some updated photos of the baby's room (new curtains and wall hangings).

Finally, I saw a good idea on another blog about trying to take pictures every day to capture moments in life. I'm going to give it a try. I'm going to try to post one good picture from the day each day. So, for today's picture, you get my lovely dog Breyer. She's so darn cute! (The baby room pics are from today too, but I love my dog).

Saturday, January 05, 2008

A new year!

So here we are in 2008. My how time flies. While I am tempted to wax poetic on all things past, I'll avoid it for the reader's sake.

Here at the Barrett household we are in the "final countdown". Both Steve and I are getting really excited for this baby boy to get here (I know, we have been excited since day 1, but it's definitely ramped up now!).

I went to the doctor on Thursday morning really hoping she would say, "Wow, you are really dilated. I think we should just send you down to the labor and delivery unit now." Instead, she said, "You are measuring perfect for your time. Do you have any questions?"

So, instead of heading off to have a baby, I went home to take a nap.

As of yesterday, we are at 37 weeks. That's pretty exciting because our doctor's office considers the baby full term now. That means if I do go into labor, there are no worries about premature issues. Yea for us!

Why are we so excited now then, you ask? Well, I get Braxton-Hicks contractions all the time. We tried timing them last night. The closest we got was 28 minutes. Luckily, the B-H aren't too painful. They do make finding a comfortable sleeping position a challenge. As my sister says, I feel like a rotisserie when I get into bed.

The contractions themselves last anywhere from a minute to 6 minutes in length. That's pretty much why I am happy that they aren't too painful. Basically, my stomach tightens and sometimes gets a funny shape. If it hurt too for 6 minutes, there might be some serious calls to doctors. For now, we just wait.

Another sign of impending labor is serious nesting. Well, Cathy and I finished up the pre-baby shopping for necessities. These were all of the things I "had to have" before the baby gets here. We had a pretty good time doing that (although don't ask Cathy to pack up the Pack and Play; she's done her time).

The next thing on my nesting urge list is grading. I actually graded 25 research papers in the last 3 days. I don't think I've every graded that many research papers in such a short time. I still have a stack of grading to get done (and I'm definitely feeling the urge to get it done), but those essays were weighing pretty heavily on my pre-baby to-do list.

Well, that's the most current update from here. I have some wonderful photos from our "My wife's too big to leave the house New Year's Eve Party" that I will share tomorrow. I think I feel a B-H contraction coming on, so it's off to bed I go!