Friday, November 30, 2012

Picture Post: School Pictures

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Picture Post: Pre-Christmas Christmas Shoot

Yesterday we got the girls and my nephew Cael dressed up in their Christmas outfits so that we could take a few pictures.  It is very difficult to get three little kids to smile at the same time, not to mention my camera is awful, so they aren't very good.  But, they are better then nothing.  We have a matching outfit for Olivia also.  Hopefully when we do this again, with her in the pictures, we can get ahold of a better camera.  Take a look at what we have so far:

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Guessing Game

When I was pregnant with Christina, my water broke on a Thursday night and she was born on a Friday, just one day before I was 39 weeks along. When I was pregnant with Gwen, my water broke on a Thursday morning and she was born on a Friday, just one day before I was 35 weeks along.

Getting closer to my due date, I can't help trying to guess when Olivia will arrive. Since I'm getting weekly progesterone injections, that is suppose to keep Olivia from coming too early. So far, so good, since I am now 36 weeks pregnant. My last injection is on Thanksgiving. Going solely based on the assumption that the injections are keeping her in, it seems to me that I will go into labor at some point after 11/29 when my body does not get another weekly injection. My guess all along has been that she will be born in early December.

However, since I recently discovered the odd coincidence of both of my children being born on a Friday, which was one day before I would have hit another weekly milestone in my pregnancy, I'm now using that to help fine tune my guessing.

This pregnancy, I hit my weekly milestone on Sundays, not Saturdays, like my previous pregnancies. So maybe I will still have Olivia on a Friday like the other girls, or maybe it will be on a Saturday, which would push it up one day based on having the other girls one day prior to my weekly milestone. If so, maybe my water will break on either a Thursday or Friday. Both of these scenarios would make this time somewhat consistent with my last two. But, was it all just a coincidence in the first place? Who knows! It sure is fun to guess though and I can't wait to find out if Olivia follows some sort of pattern that follows the other girls.

If I consider the possibility that this really is a pattern and not a coincidence, and also consider the possibility that stopping my weekly injections will lead to my body going into labor after the first missed injection, but not any sooner than the Friday birth/ one day before milestone, scenario, I'm looking at potentially going into labor on Thursday, December 6th and having Olivia on Friday, December 7th or going into labor on Friday, December 7th and having Olivia on Saturday, December 8th, which would be one day before my 39 week milestone.

Will I actually go that long though?? If Gwen was an entire five weeks early, maybe it is ridiculous to assume that Olivia would stay in until the week before her due date (like Christina did). Maybe a more realistic scenario would be to say that my water will break/ I will start labor, the very day after my first missed injection, which would be Friday, November 30th and then she would be born on Saturday, December 1st (one day before I would hit 38 weeks).

Of course I have absolutely no idea, but another thing that both Christina and Gwen had in common was that they both surprised me! With CC, I assumed I would go late, since it was my first pregnancy and that is usually what happens. With my second pregnancy, going into labor wasn't even on my radar yet and then BAM, Gwen was here. What will Olivia bring to the table? I have already surpassed the 35 week mark, so luckily she can't surprise me by coming even earlier than Gwen. Will she surprise me by coming on Black Friday maybe??? It would fit the "being born on a Friday" scenario and it will surely surprise me. (It will also drive Nik crazy if he can't work on Black Friday).  I don't know though! But obviously, I have you all now realizing just how crazy I am since I can't stop coming up with all of these possible scenarios, lol.

My final guess - Olivia will be born on Saturday, December 1st (our cousin, Melissa Bravo's birthday!). What is your guess???

And just to throw one more thing out there - I've been having contractions for weeks. Totally different from my other two pregnancies, which started with my water breaking.

Friday, November 9, 2012

I'm having a baby! Well, not just yet . . .

I'm 35 weeks pregnant now.  Last time I was 35 weeks pregnant, I was giving birth to Gwen.  Wow, I'm about to have another baby!  Hopefully Olivia will stay in there a little longer, but no matter which way you slice it, she is coming soon!  This year has been extremely eventful and we might as well squeeze one last life altering event into 2012.

I am more than excited to have this little one and am extremly anxious about not knowing when she will arrive.  With Thanksgiving and Christmas fastly approaching, I am feeling a little bit overwhelmed.  But, no one can say that I am not prepared, that is for sure! 

I have got a ton of prepared meals in the freezer just in case at some point I have difficultly cooking, I've got Olivia's room painted and ready to go even though she won't actually be sleeping in there until she is six months old or so, I've got all of the baby clothes washed and ready, I've got all of my Christmas shopping completed (but someone help me, because it doesn't stop me from wanting to continue to shop!), and I've finally finished a forty page manual that I have been working on for months which details everything I do at work so that my covering coworkers won't have any surprises.  Of course that doesn't mean that I don't still have a huge list of things that I want to do before I go into labor (haircut, car detailing, etc).  Then again, the "to do" lists don't really ever stop for me.  I can always think of one more thing to do . . .  like Black Friday shopping! 

Oh yes, I may be ready to pop out a baby by then, but that isn't going to stop me from hosting Thanksgiving at my house and shopping on Black Friday!  As long as I can still get around and I'm not literally in the hospital, I don't see why I should pass up my favorite annual shopping day.  And no, having my Christmas shopping complete is not a reason to skip it either :-)

At 35 weeks pregnant though, I am still doing pretty well.  Although I am having mucho back pain - especially in the car (oh and I feel like a HOUSE), I really can't complain.  I expect that my water will break unexpectedly like it did with both Christina and Gwen.  I am on the smaller side to begin with, so I doubt I'll get to the point where I'm having trouble getting around.  Although my recent fall down the stairs certainly didn't help things.

That's right, I fell down the stairs recently and, I am still in a ton of pain!  And I thought my back was hurting before, HA HA HA, that is really funny.  So, the story is that I slipped while heading down the stairs from the third to the second floor.  I completely went up in the air and slammed down onto the stairs (on my back) and then slid down about five stairs.  I was able to stop myself before falling down all of them, but the damage was already done.  The fall was so hard that it knocked the wind out of me and I was having trouble breathing for a few minutes.

After half a day in Labor and Delivery at my hosptial, the Doctor was able to confirm that THANK GOODNESS, the baby was perfectly fine.  Although my entire body still hurts with every single move I make, the important part is that Olivia wasn't hurt.  I have a ridiculously gigantic bruise and a bunch of cuts to show for it, but everything will be ok.  I am crossing my fingers that I am all healed up before I go into labor though.  It isn't going to be fun laying in a hospital bed for hours on end while in labor, when my body is already hurting everywhere.

Ok, so, enough about my clumsy, self-damaging fall.  I finally have a couple of pictures for you.  Take a look at me trying to take my own picture in the bathroom mirror . . . I am 34.5 weeks here (eight months pregnant):

Hurricane Sandy

While I was safe with my husband and children in Georgia, the state that I called home for much of my life was being ripped apart by Hurricane Sandy a couple of weeks ago.  Thank goodness all of my family was able to remain safe during this unbelievable storm, but I know there were many that were not that lucky. 

All of my family and friends were left without power and sadly, my father's home was destroyed.  The damage to homes and to New Jersey (as well as many other states) in general, is so great that it is going to take a very long time before things are back to normal.  There are still thousands without power.  It is so awful.

I will be thinking about my family and all of those that are still and will continue to struggle through the process of restoring their lives after this storm.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Not an easy subject

I keep putting this off, but it is well passed the time that I finally discuss something here.  Delaying the inevitable never really works, does it? 

I know many of you are already well aware that my Step Dad, Gordon, passed away in September, but some of you may not be.  It is a very difficult subject to talk about.  He was a big part of my life and was always there for me when I needed him.  He was a best friend to so many, a caring and concerned Dad to my siblings and I, a loving husband to my Mom, and just a good person in general. 

I think the hardest part about putting it down in writing is that I still say to myself almost daily, "How can he be gone?".  It just doesn't seem real.  Even almost two months later, it just doesn't seem real.  It isn't like it was all that sudden.  He was fighting brain cancer (Glioblastoma) for over two years when it finally took him from us.  For almost the entire time, he seemed completely fine.  He was having surgeries, doing chemo, and participating in a clinical trial but none the less, he was still himself.  He was a figher to say the least.  He lived his life and he enjoyed his life.  He didn't let this ruin the time he had left. 

It was a couple of months before the end that things started to change.  It seemed sudden that he no longer was able to be completely himself.  It quickly got worse and before we all knew it, it was really bad.  Thank goodness, my family and I had the opportunity to be with him towards the end.  It was amazing to see family flying in from all of the world, just to get one last visit.  None of us wanted to let go.

I still keep "seeing" him in my head as he once was and still should be today.  It just makes no sense that someone who had everything going for him, is now just gone.  He is still very much alive in my memories.

I created a photo album for him, which turns out I completed only two days before he passed.  I was hoping he would get the chance to see it beforehand, but it just didn't work out that way.  It is still a very special album and although it doesn't even scratch the surface of his life, it is still a nice way to remember him.  You can take a look at it here:

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