Isabella Danielle, born at 24 weeks and 1 day, 1lb 11oz, 12.5in

Zachary Michael, born at 36 weeks, 5lb 13oz, 18.5in

Alexander Charles, FULL TERM, 7lb 1oz, 20in

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Lots of Updates

Zach Update
As you can see by the header, we had our last ultrasound at 26 weeks. Zach is measuring 2lb 8oz and as if he were 27 weeks gestation. It is hard to imagine he is that much bigger only 2 weeks from when Bella was born. But considering how large my belly is, it isn't quite surprising. As a side note, I have excess amniotic fluid. The perinatalogist checked Zach's bladder, kidneys and esophagus to make sure that he was taking in and releasing the correct amount of fluid. Everything with him looked sound, so both doctors seem to think that it is simply a variant in my body to have excess amniotic fluid. The catch to the excess fluid is that it can spark preterm we needed another risk factor right!?! So the doctors have just stressed "stay off my feet as much as possible". Fortunately I'm still getting progesterone each week and we've completed our round of steroids. The steroids will help little man's lungs in case he does come early. Progesterone will stop at 36 weeks and my cerclage will be removed at the same time.

Bella Update
Big Sister started her summer school program Tuesday. I'm excited to get her around other children again. Her first day of school was cut short because she also saw her pediatric surgeon that afternoon. GREAT NEWS, her hernia surgery has been delayed once again. We went into the appointment under the impression that she would be having surgery as soon as next week. The surgeon had told us back in April that she wanted to repair the hernias this summer for sure. But after observing her yesterday and us updating her on Isabella's bowel patterns, the doctor is comfortable with delaying the surgery. Bella has grown almost 2 inches since Dr. G observed her in the hospital in April. With the elongation of Bella's body, the doctor seems to think the bowel is not in danger from the hernia and that by feel and appearance the hernias have smoothed out somewhat. Even though they will need to be repaired at some point, we can push it back for at least another 4 months. Chris and I are glad for this for her developmental purposes. Having the surgery next week would limit her mobility and ability to attend school, which would potentially delay any development by a couple of months. She's starting to walk very well and her little imagination is growing each day. Monday night she started playing peek-a-boo with her Fischer Price Little People (she carries them around everywhere).

We also did her 18 month check up last week. Isabella is 26lbs and 31.75 in, even with her prematurity she is in the 50th percentile for height...we are super pleased with that. Dr. J is very pleased with how she looks, her growth and how she is progressing through all of her therapy. Speaking of therapy, we also had our first therapy session out of the house with Isabella making her first trip to a playground. There is a really cool park here in Midland developed especially for children with disabilities. There are special ramps, slides and walking beams designed with special needs children in mind. Obviously Isabella only has minor special needs that she will eventually outgrow, but the therapist felt this would be a good place to test Isabella's range. She used the ramps to observe how Isabella reacts to walking up inclines and down declining surfaces. Then she had Bella walk on a gradually narrowing beam to see how she reacted to the narrowing width. Overall she was pleased with this initial visit to these obstacles.

A huge THANK YOU goes out to my mommy (Granmommy) for making a special trip out to Midland last week. Chris had to be in Houston for work, so mom came out to take care of Isabella and me for a few days. She was a huge help and we loved having her around. LOVE YOU MOM!!!

Finally passing out!..........................Trip to the Park!

Playing at Surgeons Office..............Being silly at mattress store!

Unfortunately I was not able to pamper Chris for Father's Day the same way he did for me on mother's day. We spent the entire day at home watching sports and whatever else on TV he wanted to. I will surely have to make it up to him after Zach is born. But I must tell you what an amazing father he is to his daughter and unborn son. He is so dedicated to Isabella's development and Zach's safety. I cannot tell you how thankful I am when we do make it out of the house and see how some fathers either aren't around or aren't active with their kids. I almost feel like the awkward one with the husband who is so committed to his family. Chris always plays, teaches, and loves unconditionally with Isabella. Watching the two of them interact is such a joy. I feel blessed every day to have this man as the father of my children. On top of father's day, tomorrow is the Big Guy's birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY HONEY!!! We promise to spoil you a little more tomorrow than we were able to over the weekend :)

We hope all of you are having a blessed summer so far and we wish safe travels for anyone traveling during the vacation season. Peace and Love to you all!

Phillipians 1:2-5
2 Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. 3 I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, 4 Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, 5 For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Weekend of Celebration

Not only are we ecstatic that little man is hanging in mommy's womb so well, but we had several birthday markers over the past five days. Thursday, the 3rd, was our puppy Juno's 2nd birthday. We are so excited that the 2 year age has finally hit for our rambunctious white lab. For those of you that don't know, labs typically don't pull out of their puppy phase until they hit 2 or 2.5. Juno has been a handful, to say the least, over the past two years. Even my mom can attest to her devilish ways. If any of you have seen or read "Marley and Me", Juno is a clone of Marley. Friday night we celebrated with our traditional doggy meatloaf. The puppies go crazy for it. Then Saturday Bella Boo turned 18 months. As I mentioned the other day, she continues to amaze us with every bit of knowledge she is sucking up and exhibiting. But the kicker comes tomorrow. I am officially a Thirty-Something as I hit the BIG 3-0! Of course with my birthday falling on a weekday, we spent the weekend enjoying an early birthday celebration. The first part of my birthday present arrived on Friday with a FedEx package. The doorbell rang early in the morning and I thought it was Bella's former babysitter coming to say hello (she just got back from Taiwan). To my surprise there was a big package addressed to me that I wasn't expecting, which is always a happy sight. I immediately looked at the title of the sender and in shock saw it was from ESSA BAGEL, New York City. Chris and I try to make a trip to NYC each year. While in NYC you have to find a good bagel shop and on each of our three visits we have devoured ESSA BAGEL. The last two years we have gone in June for our birthdays. Now, since we can not go to NYC this year with our precious baby boy pending arrival, I mentioned to Chris about a month ago that the only thing I wanted for my birthday was a package of ESSA BAGELS. The great thing about this little place is that they overnight bagels and cream cheese to any sucker willing to pay the price for shipping. So my fabulous husband was a sucker for his aging pregnant wife; although he swears Bella is the one that placed the order. That evening we went to Hobby Lobby to pick up a couple of items. As you can see below, Little Miss was a little rambunctious herself.

Saturday we went to one of my favorite places in town for lunch, an old time soda shop called Grahams; fabulous greasy food and milk shakes. Afterward we went shopping for my other present from Bella. The catch is, Chris found a 50% off coupon for one of my favorite boutiques in town, so I got an extra gift! Anyone that knows me well enough knows I LOVE can only imagine what I picked out, a cute pair of black/cream/red flats to accommodate my coming pregnancy months. But Chris was extra sweet and picked out a very cute top to throw into the gift pile!!! Then our birthday outing led us to my FAVORITE place in Midland...Sweet Soul Dessert Bar. It is this amazing little, simple bakery that makes delicious cookies/brownies/cakes that I go to at least once a week for my chocolate chip cookie fix (this is probably the only thing about Midland I will truly miss when we relocate). Even though Chris doesn't eat chocolate, he ordered me a small German Chocolate cake (my favorite). This was about all the out and about I could handle, so we headed back home for a little rest and some cake for Bella and me.

We topped off the birthday night with a mommy and daddy quick date at a steak house, The Barn Door (thanks Donny). It is one of those traditional Texas steak houses where the atmosphere is just as much a part of the experience as is the food. The grill was open to the restaurant to watch the meat being prepared, probably the best filet I have ever had, as a result when we got home I could smell the yummy goodness in my clothes and hair. We were lucky to have this date because our babysitter over the last few months, Katie, was sweet enough to offer to watch Bella while we grabbed a bite to eat. I was very thankful because she is leaving for the summer and I wanted her to be able to spend some extra time with Bella. She has been amazing and worked very well with Bella to progress her development in these past few critical months. We are fortunate that Ellen is back from Taiwan and will be working with Bella again. We love both of these young ladies very much for all the great work they do with our little angel.

We probably should have gotten more pictures over such a fun weekend than what we did...but that's the point, we were having fun and didn't take pictures. Thanks to everyone for all the early birthday wishes. Love and Peace to all!