Sunday, January 31, 2010

Madelyn in 4d

All those in favor of Angie posting more often raise your hand...yep, that's what I thought. All hands are up. I've got both of mine up (typing right now is VERY difficult).

Anyway, I promised a few weeks ago that I would post some video of Madelyn's 4d ultrasound and here I am to fulfill that promise. I've trimmed the video down from its original 30+ minutes to just some of the cooler parts. At least, they're cool to us.

I know there are all kinds of thoughts on whether or not to find out the gender of your baby beforehand, whether to give him/her a name or share the name with friends/family and whether or not to do things like get a 4d ultrasound. And I know for millions of years people gave birth to babies without knowing a thing about them till the day they popped their tiny little heads into the world, and everything was just fine. But for me, this is a cool thing to be able to do. Typically, Angie would have two ultrasounds during the course of her pregnancy: one around 10 weeks to verify she's really pregnant and one around 20 weeks to check in again and find out the baby's gender if we'd like. Then...that's it. Radio silence for the next 20 weeks. And during that 20 weeks we both sit and think "I wonder what she's doing right now" (yes, I know she has limited options for recreational activity). So, it's nice to be able to "check in" on our little girl and see that she's turning out to be healthy and beautiful and loves sticking her tongue out, opening her eyes and trying to find her hands.

I've put a few captions along the way to point some things out. Also, if the video seems to freeze for a few seconds, that's because the ultrasound tech was taking still pictures during those times.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

My Quarterly Contribution

Thank goodness for my dear husband and his blogging skills. I fear that this project would be quite neglected if it was left up to me. One of the reasons we wanted to start this page was to capture the growth of our family and children in such a way as a baby book would (another endeavor of mine that has been shoved to the bottom of the “to do” pile). So I am forever grateful for his updates, pictures and videos because at the end of the day blogging is not exactly a priority of mine. And while I am on that note, thank you sweetie for swooping in at 6:00 each day, pretending like you are not totally exhausted from working, and having a nonstop play-fest with Patrick until dinner is ready (and more times than not lately, making dinner too. I certainly am spoiled).

The second pregnancy has been enjoyable, like a visit from a familiar old friend. Not unlike the first time, I frequently have a little voice in my head reminding me to enjoy the whole process, the good and the not so wonderful moments; for this may be the last time we are blessed in this way.

Although it crosses my mind, I find that labor, birth, the first few months of sleep schedules and the challenges of a newborn are not at the forefront of my thoughts. Those things will work themselves out. What I think about most are questions like: Will I be able to meet my children’s emotional needs equally but have a full understanding of their own uniqueness? How do I make them feel special but not entitled? Will I be able to support and advise them in their life decisions without being too pushy or controlling? I want to parent with the ultimate goal of helping them become independent individuals but yet never want them to feel alone or neglected. For now I will focus on the immediate tasks at hand; growing a healthy baby girl and doing my best to ease the transition of a 1 ½ year-old only child to a big brother.

One of the best parts this go-around is being pregnant at the same time as my older sister, Mandie, Toby’s sister, Katie, and my friend, Megan. All of us had babies due within 6 months of each other. We could not have planned it any better if we tried (except for the fact that both Mandie and Megan live across the country from us). But it is also bittersweet when it comes to my older sister. I will be too far along in my pregnancy to travel to Idaho for Mandie’s baby shower at the end of this month. I will not be able to help her when Creighton arrives the way she helped me when Patrick was born. It saddens me a great deal that I will miss out on the first couple months of his life. On the positive side, our children will have cousins close in age on both sides of the family. Nothing impacted me more growing up than having a huge extended family.
I vividly remember family gatherings in Wisconsin, surrounded by Aunts, Uncles, cousins and Grandparents. Camping at Disney World for a whole week with 20-some relatives, backpacking in the mountains of Idaho and countless winters spent skiing, sledding and ice skating are some of my favorite memories. Mandie, our cousin Rhiannon, and I are just a few years apart and were inseparable growing up. Our parents went to great lengths to make sure we were able to spend time together despite my family’s multiple moves to different states. I remember my parents saying many times they didn’t want to get us “stuff” but would rather make memories with us. Mission accomplished Mom and Dad!

I can honestly say that learning how to fly fish, horseback riding down a mountain in complete darkness in Costa Rica and sail boating with Dad and Grandpa will always be memories kept close to my heart. I feel so incredibly blessed that Patrick and Madelyn will have cousins and Aunts and Uncles and Grandparents that are invested in their lives and happiness. I hope to provide for them lasting memories with the people that love them most. Thank you for showing us the way. A $10 campsite is full of a thousand adventures. Lesson learned.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Quick Update, Other Blogs and a Stolen Video

Things that have happened recently:
  • Patrick turned 18 months old (WHAT!?)
  • We are really finally done painting Madelyn's room. I'll have pictures/video up soon, after we get the curtains up.
  • Patrick is now well versed in the contents of our attic. He and I sat on the top step of the attic stairs for about 20 minutes the other day after putting Christmas decorations away, as he asked about everything he saw and repeated it back to me until he knew he had it memorized. There's something funny about hearing an 18 month old talk about insulation and pipes.
  • We introduced Patrick to the music of the Gipsy Kings. He now walks around the house singing "Baila Baila Baila!" Which makes his top five favorite songs right now:
  1. Baby Beluga - Raffi
  2. Ain't No Sunshine When She's Gone - Bill Withers
  3. Wheels On the Bus - Any version
  4. Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel - Traditional Hanukkah song
  5. Baila Me - Gipsy Kings
  • Madelyn's upcoming arrival is starting to feel very real. I don't know if it's getting through the holidays, having her room more put together or just seeing that we're less than six weeks away, but the abstract thought of "Madelyn" is more and more becoming the feeling of our daughter, Madelyn. We constantly talk about "I wonder if she'll do 'X'" or "I can't wait to see if she likes 'Y'." It's very exciting.
In other news, several of our family members have started blogs recently. Here are the links:

Bean Blog - Patrick's Aunt Katie blogs about Carson's life, in list format
Our Family - Patrick's Aunt Mandie blogs about their soon-to-be son, Creighton
Grandmothering - Grandma Flowers blogs about exactly what the title tells you: Grandmothering

The other great thing about these new blogs is that I can steal content from them if I'm feeling lazy. Like right now. Here's a video of Patrick and Carson I'm taking from Katie's blog (thanks Beans!). Patrick is still getting used to the idea of Angie or I holding another baby. Also, he's started just calling Carson "Tiny" instead of "Tiny Baby Carson." It's actually pretty cute. He also really doesn't want Carson to have a pacifier for some reason. But does really want to hug and kiss her.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Pictures of Madelyn!

We got a peek at our little girl this morning in 4D. She looked beautiful and...hungry. She was rooting around and trying eat her hands for almost the entire session. She also stuck her tongue out at us almost any time she did move her hands away from her face. The ultrasound tech said she had her eyes open more than any baby she's seen. Hopefully that's just because it's the day time and they stay shut all night long :)

We also learned that she's 4lbs 6oz and is measuring right on target for her due date of February 26th.

Anyway, here are a few of our favorite pictures from this morning. I'll post the video in the next couple days so you can get ALL FOUR DIMENSIONS AT ONCE.

Thanks to Grandma and Grandpa Flowers, Meme, Papa and Mollie for coming and sharing in the experience with us!