Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Our little secret!

We bought a house! We no longer live in a historic century home in dogtown! Nope. We do still live in Dogtown, but we've traded it in for a our big brick cottage in the city! Here it is!

And, NO! It's not for sale! We've already made some huge changes. There was acoustic ceiling in the living area, kitchen, and hallway and bathroom downstairs. We also took out that hideous a/c unit in the front window. The red has got to go, but all in due time. We had the front of the house tuckpointed, and it's looking less retro and more stately as we spe
ak. I'm in love.

The last couple of weeks have been busy with moving and setting up the upstairs for our main habitation area. Our master bedroom is huge! 18x12. And here's some before and afters....

We have a great picture window in our master bedroom that overlooks a lot of trees and in the winter we'll be able to see the Saint Louis skyline with the arch. It's a little diamond in the rough.
Ryan's room is the most changed, and I'll have to get some final pictures of that, but it's cute, cute. Painted Piglet pink with a white chair rail, and whimsical with a vintage birdcage in the corner.

So, here's to living in our own home! No neighbors and no late night clothes washing. I'm so thankful!!

Ryan's 9 months now, and she's so fun. I'm thankful for everyday that I get to spend with her, and she's a true blessing. I love her.

Have a happy Tuesday!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

There's a secret brewing

Well, Hello!
Life is good.

Ryan is 7 months old tomorrow, and I can't believe it. Time keeps flying by, and I should be taking more and more pictures of my baby Ryan. She's changed so much already.

Another note, I took a 2 month break from FB. It was great. I've been back online for 24 hours, and I've caught up enough where I think I could take another 2 month break. I think I most appreciated the fact that I'm not addicted to it. I can live without it, and it's not anyone's life line. I'm making purposeful connections and using the phone more often. After 24 hours, I'm off again.

Now, to the title of this post... there is a secret brewing, but I AM NOT PREGNANT! Everyone thinks that when you say secret. It's kind of entertaining. Well, that is not my secret, but it will be disclosed soon enough.

Happy Weekend!

Thursday, August 4, 2011


6 months! 6 months! I breastfed for 6 months. We did it all... food, formula, and breast milk. I did a birth plan... our idealized one, but I knew once I was being induced that went out the window. I had so many interventions that I only had one want- breastfeed for 6 months. And, I did. I feel so great about that.

I ran a 5k! I feel amazing about that too.

We're all in good health. We're all exercising, and we're going camping for this first time this weekend to the annual Back 40 bluegrass festival in Curryville, Missouri.

Here's an update on Ryan Elizabeth! She's ALMOST crawling, but she can't figure out head and arms up at the same time. She'll get it soon though.

Monday, July 18, 2011


I did it! I did it!

I ran the 5k (longer actually) -on a blistering hot day. My sister-in-law, and I did it! I stopped 2 times for 20 seconds, but that was it.

I found little goals to try to reach, and at the very end, I saw some guy who was struggling like me, and said, "man, it's hot." It gave us both that little extra push. And, we finished. I met my husband and daughter at the finishline. It was so rewarding, and a great motivation.

In other news, we went ballroom dancing! Foxtrot and swing-- here we come!
Loved it!

Making My Way to New Goals:

I know, I know. I owe myself a little slack for not blogging, but I have been busy! I recently made an overhaul to my life.
I deactivated my facebook account. This probably isn’t forever. It is amazing how I spend little bleeps during the day looking at all of my friends’ lives, yet I would not say I’m obsessed with the good ol’ FB. However, I would say that I’m on hiatus. I’ve enjoyed the last week not being on facebook and using a bit of self-control to not visiting the site. I am putting an emphasis on my daily life, and using that time to simplify my life.

It’s been several weeks since I deactivated, and I love it. One thing to note, however, is I’ve been looking at jobs- and quite a few ask for the proficiency in social networking sites…. I won’t be applying to those.
I still love that I’m not looking at everybody or wondering what that family is doing. It’s a nice, nice change of pace.

Also, I am running a 5k in 10 days. I ran 2.4 miles yesterday, so .7 miles to go!! Look at that! I’m so happy about it. I feel fit, and I’m still working on the baby weight- at a healthy rate. But, how awesome is it that I can run 3.1 miles 5 months after giving birth!?!? And, also breastfeeding! I’m kicking butt and taking names.

Running the 5K Sunday! In 2 days! I’m so pumped! I can do this if it’s not 100 degrees outside. I’m feeling so great. I’m so thankful for good health, and I’m getting this baby weight off! Run, baby, run! I just can’t wait to have it over and see my sweet husband and my baby at the end of the race. It’ll be so memorable.

We’re well! No sickness at our house anymore! It’s great. We’re all up for fun- and we’re just trying to get through summer! Summer is not my favorite time in St. Louis or Memphis, but it was in Wyoming. It’s hot!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Why haven't I been blogging?

I'll tell you why! Life with a baby is different, and I have been feeling overwhelmed. I have been trying to simplify life-- daily duties and reminders. Sometimes it seems like my to-do list is week long to do lists. Then, life happens.

What I mean is that even when all things are going as smoothly as they should-- I have a great day at work on a Monday, and the next is horrid. That was this week, thus far. So, Ryan had a fever over the weekend, and we nursed her back to health. Adam stayed home on Monday and I have Tuesdays off for the time being. Yesterday we had a doctor's appointment, and she had her 4 month shots. She has an eye infection from being sick, and she's G.R.U.M.P.Y. That's not like my happy, bubbly little girl.
I have to admit: I am a worry-wort. I worry about not being around enough or not getting home soon enough. And, I worry about how when she's sick things can go wrong. She's just so sweet and innocent, and her body is changing. I can't stop sickness, and I don't even know if I can prevent it. We're clean at home, but her little immune system is still developing, and she can get sick. POOR BABY GIRL!

I also have a little rant. I know I subjected my child to a life long fight against the odds with her name. Ryan- everyone has made a mistake of her gender. Our insurance company, the pharmacy, even the doctor's office. I just keep thinking that she'll be so noble- as her name means. And, on top of that, she'll be so proud of her name.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Gaper Day!

In the skiing world, this day is infamous. Everybody, even experienced skiers, dresses up in brightly mismatched clothing and bids the mountain hello. Today is not my gaper day.

I’m back at work, and I’ve already learned a lot.

1. Working moms are awesome. I give my sweet momma props…she worked everyday of her God-given life. And, I never fully appreciated her because I hadn’t experienced motherhood. It’s an amazing thing watching your baby grow… and soon my little girl will be grown (even though I don’t want to think about that). That’s probably exactly what my mom thinks now.

I think of my mother and smile. She’s been so tough her whole life. And she’s picked up the pieces more than once, and kept moving along. What a strong woman! I wrote my mom a note when I first found out I was pregnant, and I got to write to her how much I didn’t realize and what she had done for me.

2.Working moms who breastfeed and work simultaneously should win an award. I decided that I was going to commit and do my best to continue breastfeeding. It is NOT easy. I would like to keep going for six months, and then introduce solid foods. (I’ll be making all my own baby food, and attempting to keep it free of the bad stuff.) I never thought of myself as very organized, but I have arrived. I made a super delicious, healthy, whole grain lunch packed with nutrients and not contained in plastic.
I made a whole grain fusilli pasta with olive oil, roasted grape tomatoes, garlic and sage, onion, and white wine soaked grapes. I had fruit: packed with flavor and juice. I have some healthy veggies (cucumbers and grape tomatoes), and some dried date, which are nutty, like a Christmas cookie. It feels so good to be healthy and not huge!

Needless to say, Here’s to day 1 of the trek to 6 months of breastfeeding. Also, I’ve supplemented 1 bottle a day of formula- organic formula… the kind that has NO bad stuff. No toxic fluorides, no additives, just good plain goodness of dairy milk. It gives me a little break, and Ryan is learning about the bottle.

3. Advice my mom gave me to prepare for this morning: “Don’t be a wreck for Ryan. She’ll know some thing is wrong, and you have to be strong for her.” So, we woke up at 5:45am. I gave myself plenty of time to prepare and get dressed. I made my breakfast and lunch yesterday. I packed Ryan’s bag for the babysitter yesterday. I even made a little treat for the babysitter. Lemon squares wrapped in a brightly colored handmade box. We got bottles filled and ready. It was an amazingly smooth transition. I was even all put-together looking pretty good. So, I fed Ryan this morning twice. I pumped. Showered. And cried… while she took one of her catnaps. Adam and I walked her over to the sitters, and she was the happiest baby. It made me proud. I’m sure glad I started work on a Friday… it makes the first day an easy obstacle to overcome.

I sure do love my family… everyone has been so supportive of this impending doom. Luckily it wasn’t bad at all. I was surrounded by love and happiness all day. Ryan got baby gifts and happies, and I got to talk about her most of the day. Family, Adam’s and my own, called and checked on me, and it surely was sweet. It was hard, but it could have been even harder. (Plus, I pumped at work for my sweet little girl.)

Keep it up, moms! You can do it if you commit.

Friday, March 25, 2011


I used to think of Patchwork as a quilt, particularly the kind that comes out of a hand-me-down box. We all remember the jean patchwork that Beyonce wore. And, there's colorful corduroy patchwork that one hippy culture wears. I, however, have a soft spot for brown, black, leather and heavy, mis-matched patchwork. This patchwork sewed a place in my heart. And, this is a call to these people I met on coincidence one summer night in Jackson, Wyoming. These people were wearing patchwork pants and skirts. They wore heavy, dirt-kicking, black boots and piercings. (Needless-to-say, their appearance didn't give the air that they were approachable.)
These 'kids' were out of gas looking for extra change outside on a corner. I emphasize 'kids' because I know one young girl was 17. The others were between the ages of 18-22. Two boys and two girls. They'd been touring the national parks, and this was their last stop before hitting San Francisco. They looked like they'd been traveling days upon days. And, God knows Jackson is the best place to end up. It's just indescribably beautiful and serene. My friend and I were going to the grocery, and we were already making pizza... we looked at each other, and we saw the same thing.

We were asking them to dinner.

We were asking people that we didn't know to dinner at our house.

We were inviting them into our home to eat.

And. we. did.

They arrived most graciously and promptly. And we made some of the most delicious pizza ever. I asked them about their lives and what they had been doing. Hence, I discovered all the aforesaid.

Before sharing the meal, whilst I was still preparing dinner. We offered them to shower (those who know me know I always have clean towels and blankets.) They happily accepted.

The younger of the boys, tossed our traditional pizza crust, and helped us make the pizzas. (He'd worked at a pizza joint before heading west.)

We broke bread.

I learned that the seventeen year old girl had no family. She was going to study art in San Francisco. She'd been alone awhile it seemed. Her friend didn't talk very much, but she was very appreciative of all things hospitable. And, she was verbal about that. The older guy was very cool- from San Francisco and had just been traveling around listlessly.

Now, I did not get a background of the relationships to one another or how they'd met. I just wanted to know them. I was drawn to them as a collective. One thing was obvious though, this young man was the brains. They'd camped, slept in the car, and traveled the whole summer. Jackson is where'd they had run dry. He shared some honey they had picked up along the way, and it was mellow in flavor and feeling. It was delicious and sweet.

We knew the night was coming to an end, and we swapped email addresses. We promised that if we were in each other's city we'd catch up. I never sent nor received an email. I did wish them all the best in the remainder of their travels... and again, they were most gracious of our kindnesses.

Sadly, I don't remember any of their names. And, I haven't thought of them in a long while. I was driving home from Tennessee, and their faces came up with their patchwork clothing. I thought of that night and the sweet, sweet time we shared. We gave them the bare necessities and the humblest of things: food, shower, beverage, and smiles.

I cried. I cried because it was so wonderful. I cried because I wish this was the way of the rest of the world.

I thought: I want a revolution. I want all the people who love...WHO LOVE... to love each other. I want you to love someone you don't even know.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Vintage, Baby

Isn't she darling? I am sure this is my favorite photo so far. I love it.
She's growing so fast, and I'm loving being a mom. It has completely changed my worldview, and it's an amazing experience. I have to refer you to a friend's blog because she eloquently writes her reflections of being a mom and a wife. Her recent post of 6 months reflections is here: http://alltherestofit.wordpress.com/2011/03/21/6-months-reflections/

I was in tears reading her thoughts because her voice is so profound and true. I am so thankful for Ryan in my life, and I wouldn't change it for anything at all. The waiting part for her to come was trying, and pregnancy was not a walk in the park for me. In fact, I did not like being pregnant. I love, love, love these moments now and learning about the person she is. Of course, we will shape her and direct her, but she is already a being very, very unique.

Some things I've been working on at home:
1.Gardening. We've got violas, tulips, and miniature daffodils. Herbs are to come. I'm even going to attempt Lavender-- I am deciding on starting from seed, but it won't bloom until next year. I'm saving eggshells to correct the pH of the soil. I'm going to plant some hanging baskets of greenery today, and I'm excited about that.
2. Organizing. This is something that is challenging in our apartment. We're slowly downsizing... which is great. I acquire new things and we trade spots for old items. We removed a very large ottoman from our living room and it made a huge difference. Adam finished the baby changing table, and it's soo adoreable. L is for Lenz. Here it is:

3.Updating a found ice cream parlor table: This probably won't be completed until May. But, I found a broken Ice Cream Parlor wire table and chair set! Free! I hope to paint the metal white, and the table top and seats red. I think it will look very french. Perhaps a tea party will be in order once my dear friend, Anne, arrives back in town.
4. Exercising. Wow! How I have missed this. I did not feel like doing anything exercise wise at the near end of my pregnancy. But, I have gone for a couple of jogs recently, and boy, did I miss it. 5K in May--
5.I have some mother's day gifts in mind... I'm planning on ordering the tools for this ASAP.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Relatives and Immediate Family

"Tennessee, Tennessee, there ain't no place I'd rather be, baby, won't you carry me...."

I went to Tennessee to visit my family for the week last week. It was such a sweet time, and special for me as a mother. Ryan hadn't met her grandfather, my dad, Pop. And, I was so excited about that occasion. When I pulled into Memphis, I stopped at my dad's house, and brought the little girl inside the house. He thought she was the most beautiful baby! (Yeah, that's what I think, too.)
I left there to go to my second mother's house, Beverly's and we had dinner and stayed the night. Ryan was pretty tired after our road trip, so Tuesday morning we took it easy and were slow moving. This was our date day with Pop.
We met him at his house and sat next to the wood s
tove and warmed up. Then, I had the brilliant idea to go visit my grandmother (Pop's mother), Grandmater. Ryan would meet her Great Grandmother, and I hadn't seen her in a while. She lives in a nursing home-- and since I work in a nursing home, I know how important it is to go visit. And, I'm pretty proud that I do my best to visit her when I can. It was great. I have a great photo from the visit, and my sweet 91 year old grandmother held my daugther. She cried as we left, and it just tore at my heart strings. I love her so much, and I have such good, good memories of her and growing up being close to her. I'm so blessed to have been loved by such wonderful people my entire life. Love really is all you need.

Wednesday was my much needed pampering day-- but just to prepare for this, I had lots of work to do. I pumped all night for enough mild to be gone for most of the day. I was headed to my salon for my haircut, and it went well. I felt immediately better once my hair was done. (Pregnancy hair on me was not becoming- it became super heavy and too thick.) Next... I needed to ditch the maternity jeans. Sadly, they are still the only ones that fit me, but they. are. frumpy. I'm so glad they're outta here. I found a pair of bellbottom jeans- that I love. They are so becoming and make me feel like a new woman. (For a jeans and t-shirt kinda girl- at least one pair of jeans is a necessity.)
I went to my mom's mother's house and Ryan had some special time with her other great-grandmother. Be still my heart! Ryan was so well behaved while I was gone. And, I'm starting to feel better every day. My confidence improved significantly just due to that little pampering I did for myself. Here's to losing the baby weight, and getting back into shape!
Thursday was a shopping day, and dinner date with my dad. My sister and I found some cute items, and I bought some homeware items (new pillows for our bed and sheets.) My grandmother (Moose) found some old bedding that she no longer wanted, and I got it! It's darling for Ryan when she has her own room.
I met my dad with Ryan at a historic restaurant to the Memphis Restaurant scene. Jim's Place East (known for Greek food.) I had a glass of JFJ Almond Sparkling wine and had Moussaka for my meal. It was soo decadent and flavorful. I had forgotten what eating out felt like at a nice, posh restaurant. It was a blast and a nice dinner date with my daddy.
Friday, I picked up some mature wisteria plants for my sister-in-law. And, I knew she would be so excited to have them. I headed back to Missouri with a car full. New Pillows, all of Ryan's items, new bedding, wisteria plants, a potted tulip, and potted plants... I am so thankful for my family always thinking of us and helping us in any way.

The Weekend:
This is our anniversary weekend! We've been married a year! It doesn't seem like that long ago, but we did have a baby within the year. We traveled around alittle bit, and we are very happy.
Happy Anniversary on the first day of Spring!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

List of Things

1. Sunday Funday! We went to Forest Park today. The weather has been so delightfully wonderful! We decided to go for a walk with Ryan, and we used our hands free carrier. She loved it. Adam and I have both said on several occasions that we need a kite. This is on my list.

2. We went thrifting today-- too. And, I bought her first dress. It has a cherry on it, and it's 3-6 months. I am so excited to see her in it. I also found some children's books at the store, too. (I collect Children's books, and these were in my elementary library.) I loved them... do you remember Mr. Messy, or Mr. Lazy? check this out:
Even Adam remembered them! I am so excited to add these $.30 books to my collection.

3. I want a kaleidoscope.... I love those things.

4. My friends are visiting this week and I am so excited. Both, Noah and Anne, will be here for one day only. Thursday. I'm making homemade cranberry, walnut, and lemon scones and a breakfast dish. Also, that evening we're having smoky fondue! (it turned out great.)

5. Adam and I are building our own baby changing station... I do the painting--- Adam does the routering, cutting, jigsawing, etc.... I think it will last through all of our children. Photos... upon completion.

6. Ryan is a month old... as of yesterday! I can't believe it.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Life as I knew it.

My life now looks nothing like it did 2 years ago.

This time of the year, 2 years ago, I was living in Chile. I was making beer, wine, and whiskey in South America. I was learning spanish by speaking it and living it. We would be selling the product to the Chileans, and I would ask, "Cerveza y whiskey?" or "Vodka Kooler con pomelo o lemon?"
Back then, I was wondering if Adam would want me in his life forever. And, I was eating and preparing food that came to us from our garden or the neighbors gardens. I loved that I could ride the bike to town and call my parents, or ride to go pick figs down the street by the river. I loved NOT driving- looking at the Andes Mountains everyday-- and vacationing to Pichilemu.

Now, family is the most important thing. Obviously. We live in the city. And, although we do go camping and hiking A LOT, the
music scene probably tops the list. I've learned that living in a new place, you trade in old things that you love to do for new things one discovers that they love.

In Memphis, I loved the fact that I knew all the little places that I enjoyed to snack or hang out.
In Jackson, I loved that when I walked out any door, nature was right there. Even when I lived in an apartment complex, I could take my inflated tube and tube down Flat Creek. (And, yes, I did that.)
In Requegua, I loved being close to the earth. I worked the earth...I walked the earth. We made a bamboo room.
In St. Louis, I love being cultured. I have seen SO much music here. Carolina Chocolate Drops, Yonder, Gov't Mule, the Avett Brothers, Michael Franti and Spearhead, Jake's Leg. I just keep learning, too.

Also, we have a baby! And, here's some new photos:

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day 2011

Adam and I have a running deal. We don't buy anything for each other on this holiday. It's totally generic to say, but we love each other everyday. (not. just. Valentine's.) And, we're pretty thoughtful about remembering just happys (as I call them) to surprise the significant other with something that says a quick 'I love you.'
This particular Valentine's day, we both had very little time to prepare ANYTHING. I did have one goal: to make a chocolate cake. I'm not a big baker, but Adam loves chocolate, and I wanted to try something simple but elegant. I also hinted to Adam that a nice dinner would be just wonderful for us to celebrate the holiday. I got my wish!

Adam prepared Crusted Salmon with Honey Mustard Sauce, Steamed Asparagus, and Garlic Mashed Potatoes. I made this cake:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (can substitute with whole wheat flour)
1 cup white or brown sugar

3 tablespoons sifted good quality cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt, optional
5 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup cold water

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a bowl, combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; mix well. Make three deep holes in the dry mixture. Into one hole, po
ur the oil, into the next hole, pour the vinegar, and into the final hole, pour the vanilla.

2. Pour the water into the bowl, over all. Mix the wet and dry ingredients together until there aren't any more lumps and pour into an ungreased 9x9 baking pan, 2 inches deep.

3. Bake for about 30 minutes, test with a fork.

I also made a mocha icing:

1/2 small heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp powdered sugar
1 Tbsp cocoa (I used dutch cocoa)

I beat the whipping cream til stiff peaked.
Add the other two ingredients.... VIOLA!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Winter Wonderland

Since this year has been the most snowy in the Midwest, it gets almost everyone thinking about the Spring. I have been thinking about the warm sunshine, and how I can't wait to take Ryan to the park for Twilight Tuesday music in the park, walking, and picnicking.

All this talk about the warm sunshine reminds me of a beautiful outdoor experience while I was pregnant.

I told you about our babymoon to Ozark, Arkansas for the Yonder Harvest Festival--And, while we were there, Adam and I participated in the yoga morning activity. We walked to the tent and breathed into different yoga poses. We were under the tent at the start, and Adam moved out into the grass under the sun. The sun shone upon our faces, and it felt so warm. It felt like we were harnessing the sun's energy. It was exhilarating, and we were both thankful for the day.

This festival was three days of car camping, cooking, and listening to music. We danced and played. I was 26 weeks pregnant, and we even went on a hike. It was a disaster. Ryan was in my belly dancing and grooving. Looking back, I am so happy we went.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

2 weeks ago

Two weeks ago tomorrow, our little Ryan was born.

It's been a wild 2 weeks, and I've learned a lot.

There's a couple of things I want to remember forever:

1. I love baby breath.
2. I love swaddling.
3. This year has been the most snowy. I'm glad that we're snuggled in at home.
4. I'm enjoying changing Ryan's clothes, and watching her start filling them out.
5. I am in love with St. Louis Diaper Service. It makes cloth diapering a cinch, and it's not bad for the environment.
6. I love spending time with her in the morning.... she's so bright-eyed.
7. I love eating at home, and not having a sack lunch.
8. I love watching my husband hold his little girl.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A little girl!

Ryan Elizabeth Lenz was born January 27, 2011 at 12:01 p.m. She weighed 6 pounds 11 ounces and measured 20" long. She changed my life.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011, I was induced. Our surprise baby was 40.5 weeks, and time for her to arrive in the world. Adam and I received our call to arrive at the hospital, and we were to be there at 8 a.m. We got to our room, they put my IVs in, and started the pitocin. The nurses came in about every 30 minutes and increased the dose all day. Little baby was slow moving though. At about 4pm, the resident came in a broke my water. Then, I started having intense contractions. After about 2 1/2 hours of this, I was at about 4 and alittle, 80% effaced. I was given at epidural at this point. This was about 7pm. I felt super dosed after it was administered, and my blood pressure dropped. For about 6 hours, I couldn't move my left leg...
Then, labor slowed. But, it went badly. The pitocin was causing problems for baby. Our little girl wasn't tolerating it, and they had to stop it at about 11pm. An internal fetal monitor, contraction monitor, and catheter had all been placed. On top of that, I had my IVs, and blood pressure cuff attached too. And, epidural....
We tried to rest, but it became harder. The break from the pitocin had gone on for some time, and at about 2pm, the baby's heartbeat slowed... almost stopped. The nurses came in, and talked to me about what this means, and that, even though, the baby is moving, there's some cause for concern. When I was having contractions, the baby wouldn't tolerate it, and the heart rate would drop. This was a big deal, and about 5 nurses came in and discussed c-section. I was completely scared. I feared this, and I began to cry. The conversation happened twice, and I know I wanted my baby to be safe, but it is still hard to swallow. And, my baby needed to come out. While these events were occuring, my doctor was updated. He told the nurses to just let me rest, and hold the pitocin. At about 7am, they started the pitocin again. And, Dr. came into see me. The labor was continuing well from here. I rested and prayed for my little one. I prayed that he/she would be healthy and okay. I prayed for my husband while watching this to stay strong for me. I prayed because this was beyond my control.
At about 11am, I felt the baby lowering... I felt movement. I tried some practice pushing, and I pushed for about 15 minutes, and they got the doctor in. I pushed for a total of 40 minutes, and my little girl came into the world with the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck 4 times. Adam saw that it was a girl-- and the doctor hurried to unravel the cord. It went fine! Although I was concerned about her, she was fine. The APGAR test came back 8-9. She was alert, and I held her first. I cried. She is so beautiful and I loved her so much already. Ryan Elizabeth was here, and I am her momma. Adam was overcome with happiness, and he was bouncing all over the room.

I have to say, Adam is my strength. He had my health and the baby's health as his main concern. He aided me in whatever I needed, and he was actively involved in the delivery of our baby. He loves our little girl.

I hadn't eaten in about 40 hours, and I was famished. I finally got to post-partum room and saw my sweet child.

Ryan Elizabeth is completely healthy. No scratches or bruising. Just a sweet baby face and the creation of my love and myself. This experience was amazing. I felt like I had changed the world. I accomplished something, and Adam felt the same.

The past few days have been challenging too. Today, Ryan is 6 days old. She's met Adam's parents, and she's met the pediatrician... She's doing just fine. I stopped taking my percocet... for obvious reasons... and, my milk came in. That HURTS!

The best thing in the world though, was walking through our door at home, and knowing we were home for good. My little girl is adjusting well, and we are trying. The nights have been difficult, but we'll adjust.

Welcome to the world, Ryan! Your parents love you!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Monday, Monday

Today is Monday. I'm 2 days away from being induced.

I went to the doctor today, and I learned that I'm 2cm dilated and 75% effaced. Baby is moving down into the right place. And, even though I'm being induced, things can still happen between now and Wednesday morning. I feel better now, though, knowing that baby is slowly helping with this induction. He/She may not enter the world on their own, but they are helping it for momma.

But, good things are happening around the house. I'm going to keep busy today. I'm planning on vacuuming and mopping our floors. A ham is baking in the oven as we speak! (And, it smells delightful.) I'll wash some clothes and tidy up a bit. We've had a bunch of snow, so our floors look coated with mud. And, I love our hardwood floors.... it'll brighten up the house for sure.

Once we returned from the doctor, I decided lunch was appropriate.
I can't get enough salads... so that's what I made. And, I splurged with Ranch dressing. It's so good with cheese.

I also whipped up a tomato basil bisque quick-like.
Carmelized onions, roasted tomatoes, and fresh basil. Tres bien.

I will keep things updated as I can!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

40 weeks

Oh, yeah! We made it! But, baby is not here.
It's been an interesting week.

I worked this week, but I did have a bad day. I went to the Women's Evaluation Unit on Thursday. I was not feeling well at all. It was early Thursday, and I was already swollen. My hands and feet and legs. I had a headache already, and I was having on and off blurry vision. Not cool. They checked me out, but at the time it was kind of scary. I just didn't feel well. No signs of pre-eclampsia- but, boy, did I feel rough.

So, today is my due date. I'm looking at it right in the face, and I'm going to pass it. I'm sure. When they checked me on Thursday, I was still 1cm dilated, and 50% effaced. Ultimately, the plan is Tuesday if I haven't gone into labor, Wednesday they will induce. I'm scared about it, but I'm sure all will go well. I have faith in my doctor, and I know the hospital is number one in maternity services. Adam will be there, and family not too far away.

Yesterday was my last day at work-- that is for my maternity leave. I feel like a huge weight is lifted off of my shoulders. I have a doctor's appointment on Monday, and I'm going to enjoy this weekend thoroughly. We had a celebratory meal last night that was out-of-this-world fantastic. I hadn't had my serving of fish this week, so I decided salmon was the way to go.

I made a sweet coconut rice infused with basil, mint, and lime first. I put the herbs in the coconut milk to sit for about 45 minutes. I'd like to let it go longer, but the longer I stand the harder it gets to walk. So, I started with that. We went to the market, and I bought 10oz of farm raised salmon (I'd rather have wild, but it wasn't at Schnuck's.) It didn't smell fishy-- a good sign. I also bought:

1. Panko bread crumbs.
2. plum sauce (AKA duck sauce.)
3. green onions (scallions).
4. spring salad mix.
5. Asian vingarette.
6. lite coconut milk.

The coconut rice was started. I placed the fish on a broiler pan with aluminum foil and basted the salmon with the plum sauce. It sat for about 25 minutes, too, just resting and soaking up the sweet, tangy flavor of the sauce. I preheated the oven to broil. I made sautéed cabbage with carrots and four peppercorn pepper. Cut the cabbage as thin as possible, and heat in cast iron pan with canola oil. It turns out so flavorful and good.
Back to the Salmon:
The sauce had slipped off the filets, so I spooned it back on. I topped the sauce with scallions and panko break crumbs-- placed the filets in the oven for 10 minutes.
The spring mix salad was tossed with the Asian vinaigrette and added grated garlic and mint.

I enjoyed the meal. It was a perfect meal to celebrate with my husband. We rented some movies, and stayed in. Here's to my growing family!


Broiled Asian Salmon with Plum Sauce
Basil and Mint-Infused Coconut rice
Sautéed Cabbage with 4 peppercorns
A Spring Salad mix with Asian Vinaigrette.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

A Day in the Life

The last 3 weeks I've probably heard everyday at work this question:

"Are you still here?"
I smile and say, "yep."

Every night I go to be early... rise at about 6:40a.m. I make my lunch, my morning coffee/cocoa, and hop in the car. I head to work and being as big as I am now, I have some trouble moving myself out of our sweet Volvo when I arrive at work. I waddle around all day. Walking up and down halls and in and out of offices, I wear myself out. Then, I get home. I take my shoes off, and my sweet husband caters to most of my needs. I've written here how uncomfortable I am, but this is the hardest physical feat I've ever endured.

So, today I'm 39 weeks. The baby is likely the main thing on my mind most of the time. I'm preoccupied. I have baby brain. I'm wondering when this little one is going to grace us with his/her presence and how it's going to feel to hold my baby. I'm excited and nervous and scared. It's awesome.
39 weeks, and I've read that it could go longer than 40 weeks... jeez. I guess I'm just going to go into spontaneous labor. I've had several BH contractions... and some pains that I think are contractions. Nothing official though. No visits to the WEU, no "signs" if labor. I'm assuming that it will all happen on it's own. I guess we'll just wait and see.

Our house looks great. Besides my relationship with my husband, it's something I'm really proud of. We've got food galore. It's clean and posh. Nice environment to welcome a new bundle. 1421 Cutter is ready.

So, here's to another week. We'll see the doc Tuesday, and see what he says.


Friday, January 7, 2011

37 weeks 6 days

It's Friday! Thank goodness for that.
It's been several weeks since I have written. Our computer has a little charging problem, so I'm having to use it sparingly.
But, here's an update:

Last week at 36 weeks, I was 1 cm dilated and 50% effaced. All my labs came back excellent except my iron. I have low iron, and it's making me tired! Also, we're small for gestation age, but I'm not worried since I've gained 48 pounds. Yes, 48. That does not make me happy, but we'll lose it.

Week 37: No change. BLAH! I'm so ready. Feeling like crap most of the time is not fun. And, I've developed a few small stretch marks. Ugh. I am ready to meet my baby, but he/she isn't ready to meet me or his/her papa.

We did have a sweet surprise couple's shower hosted by my sisters in law and mother in law... and my mom and sister were there! We recieved some cute, cute items. And, we're more prepared than ever.

I will try to post a picture of our baby area. It's rather darling, AND gender neutral! Yippee for not knowing the sex! We did, however, do the ring test. It said boy..... I guess we'll see if it was correct.

Wish me luck these next 2 weeks. I feel like I might not make it.