Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - The Cake

Every year we have a family & friends only party for the kids and then an 'everyone' party where family, friends, classmates, playgroup mates, etc, help us to celebrate. I always make the cake for the family party and then we purchase one that matches whatever theme I go with for the 'everyone' party. Well, this year, I figured that Talan was old enough to help me with his cake. He helped me to mix up the ingredients and to decorate his cake. He said he wanted a blue car ... we did the best we could, LOL! It was so much fun though and it will give him something else to look forward to on his birthday.


The day on which mother finds out that she is pregnant with her first child is a day of unbelievable excitement. I won't ever forget the day that I found that Ted and I were expecting. I remember feeling nervous, anxious, even scared, as I awaited the pregnancy test to give a reading as I knew that whether it read positive or negative, it would change our lives either way. Of course, in a bigger way if it turned out to be positive. I can remember holding that test in my hand after the appropriate amount of time had elapsed and almost wanting to scream with excitement as I stared at two lines which symbolized a new beginning, a new life.

Fast forward to August 3, 2008 at 12:08 PM. I was holding that new life in my hands and was overwhelmed with so many emotions. Happiness, joy, and even a little anxiety as I didn't know what to expect with this little Tiff/Ted combo.

It's hard to believe that today, that little 7 pound, 11 ounce boy now looks like this ...

and is 3 years old today!

Talan is so full of life and personality! He is a boy in every way, loving to climb and analyze the world around him. That analyzing has often led to frogs being loose in our home, and even him finding spiders and other odd critters outside and feeling the need to show them to me, up close and personal. Even though it sometimes scares me that he is so bold with animals and the outdoors, I love every critter moment.

He is also such a clown. He loves to laugh and he loves to make people laugh. Just this morning after he had come downstairs and we all told him happy birthday and sang to him, he made up a little song that went something like "It's my birthday yeah, yeah! It's my birthday yeah yeah!" and with every exclamation he got louder and louder. I couldn't help but to laugh.

As for interests, he is really into books and again, the outdoors. He loves to camp and fish and play in the sand and climb, but he also still loves to cuddle with his mom too and I hope that doesn't change for some years. But, no matter how old he is, he will always be my 'little man.'

Happy Birthday Talan!
Mommy loves you!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Nursery Details

I know it's long overdo, but here are a few details from Aniela's nursery.

There is a humongous window behind the crib that gives off some beautiful natural lighting, but I cropped it out to get a closeup of the nursery bedding. We don't really have to turn lights on in Aniela's nursery until nighttime because of the window.

I actually have a thing about putting carpet in nurseries, it's just something I don't do, but in every house there is a room that can be a bit drafty/cooler than others, and unfortunately this is it. I had the carpet laid down to absorb some of that cooler air. I do plan on ripping it up one day when she's older, though.

She's co-sleeping with us now so this room doesn't even get used except during her naptime. That TV is going elsewhere by the way. My husband put it there "temporarily" he says. I told him that by the time she is sleeping through the night, at which point we will move her to her nursery, it had better have a home or it's going in the garage.

If anyone has any questions about where I got particular items, feel free to ask.

Aniela's Birth Story

Momma Morgan here and I'm taking back the reigns of my blog.

To my wonderful husband who took control over my blog for 3 days, thank you! What you all out there don't know is that I didn't even ask him to do it. We were all just sitting around after Aniela's birth, and out of the blue Poppa Morgan said "Hun, do you want me to update your blog and let everyone know about the baby? I can do it if you want me to." He was so ready for the world to know that our little angel had arrived. As I hopped online this morning and read comments and messages and e-mails, I was glad to see that everyone really loved his posts, even if it were only three of them. I even had some e-mails stating that he needs to do a guest spot again. When I told Poppa Morgan this information, he responded "I will check my schedule and get back to you." That's my husband!

Also, thank you to everyone for all of the congratulations and warm wishes. They are much appreciated.

Now, for Miss Aniela's birth story.

Wednesday, October 28th, 2009

I started having what I thought to be just very strong Braxton Hicks contractions. Then, one hit me pretty hard and that's when something told me to keep track of when these pangs occurred. I realized that these surges (that's what us Hypnobirthing moms call them) were occurring in a certain range, about 12 to 15 minutes apart. As everyone knows, Braxton Hicks are random and sporadic, so I was indeed having contractions. My boss was in a meeting so I left a message with her secretary to let her know that I was leaving for the day as it seemed that my daughter was preparing to arrive and I didn't want our design studio to become a birthing studio as well. I called Ted once I got to my SUV and let him know that I was heading home because I was having surges that were pretty regular. I told him that they weren't very strong, but they were happening, and I felt it best for me to just go home. He told me he was going to get off from work too and come home, which I figured he would do. I told him to go ahead and pick Talan up while he was at it. I also called my midwife and let her know what was going on.

Fast forward to 9 o' clock ... yeah, 9 o' clock, PM. Dinner had been made and eaten, Talan had been nursed, bathed, and put down for the night, and my contractions, well they had almost completely fizzled out. They had lost all sequence and order and were even milder than they were earlier in the day. I still had minor surges here and there, but again they were randomly occurring and weren't very strong, basically like Braxton Hicks. My midwife had come by and stayed for some hours, but we all figured that the little girl wasn't going to be making an appearance that night, so she left, Ted and I hit the shower and then the hay.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

I was awakened Thursday morning around 5:30 AM by a very strong surge. I didn't wake Poppa Morgan as it was just one surge, so I just went downstairs, put "Return to Me" into the DVD player, and started watching it. I have this nifty little gadget called that KickTrak that does numerous things, including time contractions, so that's how I kept track of how often the surges were occurring. I guess Poppa Morgan realized that I had gotten up because he came downstairs about 10 minutes after me.

Just like with Talan's birth, I used Hypnobirthing relaxation techniques. When pregnant with Mr. T, I read the Hypnobirthing book and Poppa Morgan and I took the classes as well. Ted called our parents and a few of our friends to let them know what was going on. One of my best friends (and the mother of my Godson) Katie is a professional photographer who photographed Talan's birth, so naturally we enlisted her to photograph Aniela's as well. Our friend's Matt, Kevin, and Eric helped Ted to prep the birthing pool in our bedroom. After they finished and everyone else had arrived, we all just sat around and hung out like we always do. We watched movies and talked about random happenings, and just enjoyed each others company.

Around approximately 10:15 is when I would say the pressure down below was really strong and I had began to get uncomfortable, so Ted and I, and Katie, made our way upstairs to our bedroom (everyone else stayed downstairs). About 10 minutes later my forewater broke and I asked Poppa Morgan to call my midwife and have her come on over. We had been giving her progress reports throughout my labor, but now I felt as though my contractions were strong enough and close enough together that the little girl could come any minute.

My midwife came straight over, got prepped, and checked my cervix. To my surprise I was only 6 cm dilated. She had us go ahead and get in the pool. Sometime later, my midwife started to look at me a bit funny. She told me that she noticed that I was "grunting" whenever I talked, which is generally a sign that a woman is working with her body to push the baby out, though she may not realize it. And to be honest, I didn't realize it! My midwife didn't ever get a chance to check my cervix again as before we knew it, I was giving full blown pushes. I found that I was more comfortable on my knees with my arms resting on the edge of the pool. Poppa Morgan stayed behind me, rubbing my back and reinforcing me to keep me focused. He was so wonderful and just his presence was so much help in my labor process. The next thing I knew my midwife said she felt Aneila's head, and once her shoulders were out she allowed Ted to help bring our little girl forth. After 41 weeks and 5 days of being in my womb, Aniela Grace arrived at 11:21 AM, head first I might add. If you all recall, from 28 weeks forward our little angel was a bit stubborn and remained breech. My midwife found that she had turned head first when I was about 41 weeks and 2 days.

We stayed in the pool for about 20 minutes, giving Aneila's cord time to stop pulsing. My midwife and I wiped her down and then I nursed her, all while soaking in the water. Then, Ted cut her cord and helped me get out of the pool get dry and wrapped up in my robe. My midwife weighed and measured Aniela (6 lbs, 2 oz, 19 1/2 inches long), wrapped her up all nice and snuggly, and myself, my husband, and our daughter all got comfy in our bed.

I had Katie go downstairs and get Talan and bring him up. As Ted mentioned in his blog post, Talan was, and still is, a bit on the fence about his sister. He will touch her hand or pat her head from time to time, but he hasn't really embraced the whole "new baby" concept yet.

Today is Aniela's third day with us and every day, both Poppa Morgan and I can't help but to look at our beautiful children and thank God for blessing us with them and giving us the opportunity to be their parents.

We're still learning about this new little blessing, but I have personally learned that when she wants something, she is going to let you know. There is no shame in our little girl's game when it comes to crying. If she wants something, she's going to cry, period. As for eating, she nurses every 2 to 3 hours for about 10 to 12 minutes. And yes, I am still nursing Talan, though I have a feeling that he is about to wean himself. He is so into learning about the world around him that he doesn't have time to nurse anymore. I do, however, plan on expressing milk for him up until he turns 2 years old.

As you can see in the photo above, Aniela's skin has been just flaking off. I didn't ever have this problem with Talan. He shed, but not in big flakes like Aniela has been. I called our pediatrician and spoke with him about the situation. He informed me that it is normal for babies that are born past their due dates to shed in big flakes. Why? Who knows, but I just wanted to make sure it wasn't anything worse than it is.

My midwife will be coming over soon for her last visit with us. She has been absolutely wonderful throughout this entire process, and when we have our next child, I will certainly be using her services again.

Thanks again to everyone for the warm wishes and support. I look forward to sharing more about the new little lady in our lives with you all.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Departed Due Date

Well, my due date has come and gone, it has departed so to speak. It was estimated that our little girl would be here on the 17th of this month, but, nature had other plans. Of course, due dates are just that, estimations, and one is technically not "overdue" until they are 42 weeks pregnant, so honestly it's not a big deal for me. I know that when my body is ready, it will do what it needs to do to get her here. No unnecessary medical interventions for this mommy, natural all the way.

Anyway, obviously I have been slacking on my blogging again, but that's because we're trying to do as much as we can to get everything ready for our daughter's arrival. My husband and some of our friends actually did a bit of rearranging in the den so as to have room for the birthing pool. The nursery is officially ready, and I will be taking photos of the finished product to post for your viewing pleasure. Now, we're just playing the waiting game, which I will happily play as long as it takes.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Countdown to Aniela

The nursery is ready, the birthing pool has been brought up from the downstairs area (still in the box though), food is being pre-prepared and frozen, and time is now of the essence. The Morgan mound is preparing for the arrival of a most precious blessing, little Aniela. Until someone brought it to my attention today, I had forgotten that it is indeed October, and our little girl is estimated to arrive in only SEVEN days!

Poppa Morgan is on edge, just as he was with Talan. Every little kick that makes me grunt or rub at my belly, he goes "Are you okay?" He is now at the point where he always has a look of concern on his face.

As for Mr. T, we don't know what he's feeling exactly. I do believe that he is going to miss laying on my big belly, and I also think he is going to miss when I put his hand on my belly and Aniela moves. It makes him laugh the biggest laugh. Luckily we have captured tons of video footage of this so we will always have the memory on hand. I'm really intrigued to see how the little guy is going to react to his little sister, but I guess time will tell.

As for me, I'm as big as house, but I'm loving every minute of it. I'm one of those rare women who enjoys pregnancy. It has even been said that morning sickness has a purpose, and though it's no fun, it's a part of the process. I have achieved a lot of things in my life, but my greatest achievement in my opinion is having a life form inside of me, a life created by the union of my husband and I and overseen by the man above. But it doesn't stop there, as I not only carry this life, but I am essentially it's life force. It lives because of me. It thrives and flourishes because of me. I am its protector, its sanctuary, its home for 9 months. I can't think of a greater process than pregnancy, and that's why I make it my duty to enjoy every minute of it. I am even thankful for the aches and pains, as a wonderful blessing is the cause of them.

And for those who are curious, yes, I am still working. I worked up all the way up until Talan's birth, and I'm doing the same thing now. It really keeps me on my toes and it keeps my mind off of how anxious I am to meet our daughter.

So anyhow, that's basically what's going on in the mound ... anticipation. Naturally I will keep you all updated ... duh, it is a blog! Poppa Morgan has volunteered to be a guest blogger after the baby's birth so that should be interesting. I can see myself now over his shoulder trying to dictate every word he writes. I think he'll do fine though.

Well, I'm off to finish stuffing diapers and folding prefolds, what fun!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Kreativ Blogger Award - Find Out Something New

I am honored to have received my first blogging award, the Kreativ Blogger award. I was given the award by Caroline (check out her blog The Croley Gang), a fellow mom blogger who I actually met on a social site for moms. She is such a great and kindhearted person, and even if no one else does, I can always count on her to leave a comment on my blog posts.

So now that I have this award, I have to pass it on to some others, but first there are some rules that I must state and of course follow as well.

Kreativ Blogger Award Rules:
1. Thank the person who nominated you for this award.
2. Copy logo and paste it to your blog.
3. Link to the person who nominated you for this award.
4. Name 7 things about yourself that people may not know.
5. Nominate 7 Kreativ Bloggers.
6. Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate.
7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs letting them know they have been nominated.

So I have to tell you seven things about myself. Hmmm ....

1) I have been doing gymnastics since I was 3 years old.
2) I was close to attending and participating in the Olympics (yes, in gymnastics) years ago.
3) My dream car (and a dream it will certainly stay) is the Maybach 62 Landaulet, reasonably priced at $1.35 MILLION. See why it will stay a dream?
4) My shoes of choice are flip flops, of which I have about 30 pair.
5) Poppa Morgan and I went to Thailand for our honeymoon, the farthest I have ever traveled. It was absolutely beautiful.
6) I realized that I wanted to be an interior designer when I was about 13 years old. Most kids change their minds about their career paths, but I didn't, and here I am!
7) I love to sew, a skill that comes in handy in my profession. I haven't ever made clothes, but I have made pillows, curtains, and even duvet covers.
8) I am very skilled at the piano, thanks to a mom who has been teaching the subject from home for years.
9) The camera I use for my photos is a Nikon D90 that I got from Poppa Morgan as a Christmas present last year. It was an upgrade from a D40 which he is now learning. I am certainly still learning my D90.
10) I'm going to make number ten the "rundown of facts" about me. These things are a part of who I am, but they do not make me who I am. I am an extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, delayed/selectively vaccinating, holistically circumcising, foreskin donating (yes, you can do that, if you have any questions just ask), babywearing, cloth diapering, natural birthing, delayed cord clamping, extended rear facing, homemade baby food making, always sewing, full time working, Christian daughter, sister, wife, mother, and friend.

Now, here are some people who most certainly deserve this award, so I'm going to give it to them! And the award goes to (Imagine the Price is Right theme starts playing. I don't know why that's the theme playing, just go along with it!) .....

1) JoJosMama
2) Estelle
3) Tori Jean
4) Monika
5) Sweet Home Montana
6) 2 Toddlers and Me
7) Momma Such

All of the names above are linked to the person's blog, so make sure to check them out. All of these ladies have some really great blogs. Some are just starting out, but I'm sure they would appreciate you dropping by and checking out their blogs.

Thanks again to Caroline for my first award, I was really excited about seeing my name listed on your blog.