Monday, March 11, 2019

One Month

Its incredible that one month has passed already since this sweet girl was born! She's still so tiny, but seems to me a lot bigger than she was at birth. She's been eating well and gaining weight and is healthy despite a little cold we all picked up, but are mostly over now. We had a four week check-up with our midwives today and she is up to9 pounds 5 ounces. She is a happy little lady as long she is snuggled up with mommy (sometimes she's fine with a sibling too), but its not common for her to be fine just lying by herself. I put her in her crib while she was already sleeping and got a few shots of her slowly waking up. We took some photos of her awake too, plus a bonus of Trevor since he insisted on having some attention too :)

Here she is slowly waking up. (The rip in her sleeve has been there since I got the outfit. I ordered it online and didn't even notice the rip until I put it on her the first time and figured it would take too long to get a replacement since she's almost outgrown this outfit already)

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Natalie's first bath

Earlier this week, we gave Natalie her first real bath. Up until then I had just wiped her face or hands with a wash cloth if needed. She seemed to enjoy the warm water and the kids were thrilled to help. They kept asking when we would give her a bath, so when I said I was going to do it one morning, they all rushed to help (except Leif who was busy practicing the piano). They gathered up all the supplies and were eager to help. Asher was the most help while Heidi and Trevor mostly just watched and stuck their noses in when possible.

 This is how she felt when we took her out of the nice warm water- she was very glad to get all dried off and snuggled up again.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Natalie's Birth Story


Its been over three weeks, so I think I finally need to get up some pictures of this sweet little pumpkin that has recently joined our family and post about her birth. Like our last two babies, Natalie was born at home and I think hers was the easiest of all my births (no surprise once you get to baby number 5!). Natalie was "due" on Valentine's Day, according to an ultrasound, but I was pretty sure she was actually due about 10 days earlier and was expecting her to be born sometime in the middle- and I was right. On February 11 at about 6 pm, I sent Austin a text message to tell him that I was pretty sure I was having contractions rather than Braxton Hicks although they weren't all that regular yet and he should come home. He said he was on his way, so I finished up dinner and we ate quickly, then did a quick Family Home Evening with the kids. Sometime as we were putting the kids to bed, I let them know that I was in labor and we would probably be waking them up sometime in the middle of the night to see their baby sister. Austin started setting up my birth tub (which was highly engaging for the kids and prevented them from going to bed quickly) and I got a few last things ready between contractions. Around 9 I called my midwife and said that contractions weren't completely regular, but I was sure the baby was going to be born before midnight, so she said she would come over. She and another midwife got there in about half and hour and set up all their supplies. My contractions slowed down a little at this point, but that is typical with a sudden change. She checked my cervix and I was dilated to a 6. I don't remember the timeline very clearly, but about an hour later Austin woke his mom up and we got Heidi up. Soon after I decided to get in the birth tub because it had helped ease the pain so much in my previous births. Unfortunately, Austin was never able to get it quite warm enough, so after two or three contractions I got out and used my other favorite technique for managing contraction pain: leaning against Austin while we were both standing up. (I think Austin went to get Asher and Leif right as I was getting out, because I had to lean against my bedside table for a contraction while he was gone). Sometime around here (either still in the tub or just getting out) I told my midwives that I could feel the baby moving down and had an urge to push. I was surprised by this since my contractions weren't as hard or as close as I remembered from previous births. A few contractions later, I started pushing and my water broke as I leaned against Austin, a contraction or two later and I could feel that the baby was crowning. My legs were pretty shakey and I was afraid I might fall over if I gave birth standing up (although Austin was completely supporting me), so my midwife suggested I kneel on the bed. In a contraction or two, the baby's head was born and two minutes later at 11:15 pm, she was completely born. I was facing toward the kids so they didn't completely see everything, but they have since told me several times that Natalie just plopped out onto the bed. The umbilical cord was kind of short, so I had to ball up a little to pick her up. The midwives and Austin got me situated in the bed snuggling Natalie and after the cord had stopped pulsing they were going to cut it. Austin asked Asher if he wanted to do it, but he was hesitant, so Austin did it. After they had seen their sister, Austin got the kids back to bed. I don't remember if the kids were still awake when we weighed Natalie, but I do remember that by looking at her, everyone was guessing she was in the 6 pound range, but we were all surprised that she weighed in at 7 pounds 15 ounces- by far the biggest of all my babies (Asher previously held the record at 7 lbs 4 ounces and all the others were close to the same). She measured 20 1/2 inches. About midnight, I started bleeding a lot and my blood pressure was a little high. My midwives gave me two shots of petocin in my thigh over about an hour and were discussing having me go into the hospital. I was obviously very hesitant, although of course I would have gone if necessary. The bleeding eventually subsided and I wasn't having any side effects like feeling weak or dizzy, and my blood pressure went down to normal (it was probably high because I was stressed about going in to the hospital), so they said I was fine to stay home, but I should just be aware of my bleeding and any dizziness. When my midwife returned the next morning, everything was just fine. Natalie has been eating and gaining weight very well, and although I had quite a bit of anxiety for the first week or two, I'm doing much better now (although I'm still a bit stressed and hormonal ;) Everyone has been very helpful. Austin's parents did all the cooking and laundry while they were here and helped so much with the kids. My mom helped a lot too and took the kids sledding almost every day she was here.
Here are some photos of Natalie- Austin only took one right when she was born of the two of us to send to my mom- I still haven't seen that one and I don't think its very good, but I took quite a few of her since then. We also had a professional do baby photos with Natalie and the family, but I don't have those back yet- I'll put them up when I do.