31 August, 2008

Some pictures of our ONE MONTH OLD baby boy

C turned one month old on Friday! It's been a long, long month in one way and in another, it still seems unreal that we have a newborn baby boy in our house!

Here are some pix:

Lovin' his vibrating bouncy seat (that Mommy put together all by herself!)

Hanging out with Daddy on Friday while mommy went to Target and spent gift cards on this, and this and this and this and this! We're going to have fun!

P.S According to C's bio-mom, as close as she could calculate, today is his actual due date.

Gearing up for Gustav

Wow, what an eventful few days it has been!

We are in the upper portion of where the flooding is predicted to begin come Tuesday or Wednesday. There have been reports of anywhere between 4-12 inches of rain anticipated. It is predicted to rain every day of this next week until Saturday. Hubby is right now mowing real quick because it will be a long time before he gets another chance and the grass will be out of control.

During hurricanes Katrina and Rita, our little city was a haven for evacuees and our Church is gearing up to minister again to the evacuees. Our denomination's national encampment is 10 minutes from the church, and that is the base of service for our church members. There are already 100+ evacuees at the camp. We will feed them one hot meal per day and sandwiches, etc the rest of the time. There is also the work of cleaning and maintenance. It is a huge job and our church members have shown themselves to be faithful to serve in the past and have already mobilized for this hurricane as well.

The National Guard is using our Activity Center as a place to shower and rest. It is looking to be a very busy, and wet week for us here in East Texas!

Not knowing what to expect, we have gathered our own personal supplies as much as we can. We do anticipate losing power from the winds. With Rita we had up to 75 mph winds. All we can do is hunker down and see what happens.

With having a newborn, I can't be out at the camp this time. But hubby has already been helping to organize things.

Our Senior Pastor's daughter just began Texas A&M at Galveston and they are still reporting that classes will meet on Monday and students are expected to be there! He is right now driving her down there. If things do get bad, they'll bus the students to the main A&M campus in central Texas.

So anyway, we're glued to The Weather Channel and Fox News watching and waiting.

Keep all the people in our region in your prayers!

30 August, 2008

C's FIRST (play)DATE

On Thursday our good friends Jessy, Randy, Marina and brand new baby Cara came to visit! It was great to see them after such a long time.

C and Cara had a blast hanging out and sleeping in their mommy's arms and had an afternoon snack with their Gerber bottles. Cara had a nice '08 frozen milk-bank breast milk and C had a lovely bottle of Similac Advance! Right before our friends had to leave, the two cuddled on the couch for a minute, but C wasn't too happy about it. I guess he still thinks girls have cooties! I can't believe he hasn't outgrown that phase yet!

27 August, 2008

Bathing Cutie

Hooray for Sleepy Wrap!!!!

It's here, it's here! Our Sleepy Wrap has arrived!!

I tore into it like Christmas morning!

Oh wow, look! A cute little carrying pouch, that is a surprise!

And after just one false "tie", got it a little too loose the first time - wah lah! C is asleep in the SLEEPY WRAP!!

I just picked him up out of the bassinette and slid him right in the pouch and he never woke up!
I'm lovin' my Sleepy Wrap already!!
It's very snuggly and no pressure anywear. Kind of like wearing a too tight t-shirt, the feel of it. If I had on a black T, especially a long sleeve one, it would even look quite nice to go out and about in!
I've got to stop by the baby boutique before picking D up from school and I'm going to wear it in and tell the owner she's GOT to start carrying them! This shop has just recently made an obscene amount of money off our shower, specifically from monogrammed burp cloths. Maybe she'll cut me a deal on another one, maybe in red!
P.S. I'm typing with two hands and C is still sleeping like a baby :O)
Update: I just washed my face, brushed my teeth, put on my contacts and make-up and went to the potty! All while holding C. I love it! Ok, off to pick D up from school, I wish I didn't have to take C out of the pouch and put him in the carseat!
Sandy, I think it would be easy to carry a child up to 25-ish pounds in it. There are 3 different "holds" the way I have C is the newborn/preemie hold. Here is a link to the older child hold.

26 August, 2008

Preparing the nursery

One of the drawbacks of a surprise adoption is that there is no time to prepare! We are just now getting things together for C's nursery. Of course he's been sleeping in a bassinette in our room since he came home. So it's not mandatory that the nursery be hurried, but we're ready to get things organized and find a place for all this stuff that a little one accumulates!!

So, here are a few pics as we wade our way through!

We really liked the baby bed we had with D, so we got C one just like it in Cherry along with the matching changing table. We looked into a more transitional crib, but they all go into a full bed and we couldn't find one with a drop down side which I need since I'm short. This goes into a toddler bed, and D stayed in her's as a toddler bed till she turned 5 and got her big girl furniture. Hubby wants C to have bunk beds when he gets older.

Since C can't get out and about much yet, Hubby went and bought the Chest/Dresser all by himself. That was brave of me, wasn't it? Hubby has been having much more imput in C's room than he did with D's or Vika's. So, I let him choose. I think he did well! It was just delivered right before I had to go pick D up from school.

We still have alot more cleaning up to do. I have to go through all those totes and divide things up into what we'll keep, what will go in D's memory box since most likely we won't reuse alot of it now., and what we'll give away (Kim K. & Deb, you'll have a box coming if you want it!) It's been a little emotional for me to go through all that stuff.

Here is a glimpse of C's bedding. It arrived yesterday afternoon. I really like it. It is by Cocalo and the fabrics and textures are really nice. I don't know how much will come across in the picture.

P.S. TXMOM2B, here is a link to the nursery we had prepared for Viktoria. We had all the pieces in white. We loved this set. It is so sturdy and versatile. The side goes up and down really smoothly and it worked great for D coming home at 11 months until she was 5! We couldn't find a dresser or glider in the cherry, so we bought this seperate dresser that will work for him his whole life. Then we already had the upholstered rocking chair that matches perfectly and we didn't even plan it.

Random Post and Answers to Questions

I've been meaning to post this for some time, but the time I have to actually sit down and post is short these days! So I may continue to add to it bit by bit.

I thought I'd answer some of the questions that have been asked in the comments and share some random thoughts I've had concerning this Surprise Domestic Private Adoption.

  • What happens now with your Russian Adoption? Are you still going forward with Russia since your agency is now accredited? Per our agency's guidelines, if we pursue another adoption or become pregnant, the Russian Adoption goes on hold, unless we decide to cease the process. Then we must wait one year from C's birth if we wish to carry on. We have asked to be placed on hold, since we are completely paid for the Russian Adoption (other than the final travel and Russia side of things). However, it is most likely that we will not continue. At this point we can't see ourselves with 3 children. But, who knows, we may decide to continue and adopt an older girl between the ages of D and C.

  • Will this be an open adoption? I guess you'd call it semi-open. Before C was born, in speaking with the birthparents, I asked them how much openness they wanted in this adoption. We decided together that we will send pictures each year on C's birthday. There is also the open possiblity to meet together once a year in a neutral location.
  • Wow, D's hair is getting so long! I know this is not adoption related, but I wanted to share about this too. The pictures on the blog don't do D's hair justice. She really has golden strands throughout her hair, it is very Barbie like. Anyhow, she's been wanting to cut it, but we are growing it out long enough to donate it to Locks of Love. It has to be 10 inches of healthy hair before it can be donated. We're nearly there. She'll get a cute bob once it grows long enough. Let me say here, Flintstones Chewable vitamins help it grow faster than the Princess ones! I don't know what brand the Princess ones were, but once we ran out of those and bought Flintstones, it's like wham-o that hair (and her nails) have sprouted! My step-mother has been battling cancer and chemo and lost her hair. When D saw how Granny lost her hair, she wanted to help a child who loses her own hair to have beautiful hair like she has.

  • How were you treated at the hospitals? It was amazing the respect and entitlement we received at the both hospitals. Here in our small town, before the lawyer went back to get the preliminary signatures of the birthparents (in the paperwork for us to take C to the other state to go to the neo-natal), the nurse held my hand and C's little tiny hand and prayed over us that all would go well. They let us stay with C in the baby nursery all night the first night he was born. They educated us on newborn things and I think were excited to be part of such a miracle. In the big hospital Neo-natal, the doctors and nurses were great. They saw how dedicated we were to C by being there whenever we were allowed to be there and when we left, the doctors and nurses hugged us and told us how happy they were that C is going to such a good home. They even took C to the well-baby nursery and took his newborn pictures since he didn't get any. They don't usually do that in the Neo-natal unit.

Now for some of my random thoughts.

  1. I remember how Debbie struggled over making their birthparent profile just right. I have thought afterward of me walking into that labor/delivery room and standing there before the birthmom in the bed, having contractions, to my right and the birthdad in a chair to my left. I stood before them and gave an impromptu, oral profile in about 10-15 minutes time! It was sur-real! The pictures I showed them were straight out of my wallet! But it was also a sweet time and a precious memory as the birthdad got out his wallet and showed me a picture of them at their wedding and a picture of their older son. I think the doctor had already told them some about us before I arrived. I remember telling them about us building this new house and how I felt guilty leaving that back bedroom just tan while D's room was being painted pink and fancy. Now we know why! It was meant for a boy and I just didn't know it.

  2. I've thought of lots of things leading up to C's birth that were in a way preparation that I didn't realize at the time.

  • A few months ago, when we were still in the mobile home, hubby came in to the living room and said, "you know, if we ever do have a boy, how about C_ _ _ for a name?" I thought it was a "different" name, but what the heck, we're not having a boy anyhow - so sure, yeah, it's fine. Then when I followed the nurses into the baby nursery to weigh and do all that newborn stuff to C, I looked at him real up close and thought, "yep, he looks just like a C!" Right then I knew that was his name! There was no further thought to it!

  • Remember how I did that online thing for the free Parenting magazine ? I had to watch a bunch of Johnson & Johnson commercials in order to "win" it. I remember thinking, it didn't apply to me, any of it but oh well, it was worth the little bit of time for the free magazines! I can't tell you how many times what I watched in those video/commercials has come back to me in caring for C!!

Ok, I've got to run for now. I've got more, but maybe I'll post it later. C is beckoning me through the baby monitor. And I've missed my napping opportunity, uh-oh!

Oh yeah, here's a pic!

25 August, 2008

First Day of Second Grade

I cannot believe D is a Second Grader! Today was her first day back to school, boy did this summer FLY past!! I seriously doubt there is another second grader in D's school who had as eventful a summer as she did!!

Ok, here are some pix!

Going to bed for the last time as a First Grader and . . . .

Waking up a SECOND GRADER!!!

All ready to go.

She picked out her own outfit and wanted to wear her hair down like the big girls (it drives me nuts hanging in her face). So I relented for the first day. After she got dressed I met her in the hall and she asked, "How do I look?" and I looked at her and nearly cried as I said, "you look great!" She popped into the bathroom to look at herself and said, "I look like a teenager!" and I told her, "I know, that's why I kind of looked sad a minute ago when I looked at you, I'm not ready for you to grow up so fast!"

Bye, Bye! Here I go!

24 August, 2008

It's a wrap

Thanks so much for your advice about the slings/wraps. I had leaned heavily toward the Moby, but as I researched a bit (and I do mean, A BIT) more, I felt like the Sleepy Wrap sounded the best. It seems to be alot like the Moby, but with a little sturdier fabric so the baby doesn't sag as much. I haven't found one negative remark about the Sleepy Wrap, but I think it is newer so maybe the bad is just not out there yet. There were rave reviews about the quick delivery and great customer service. I ordered it earlier this afternoon and if the delivery time holds true as the other reviews suggest, I should receive it Tuesday or Wednesday. I ordered the black one, "just in case" Daddy wants to try it too. The price was awesome, just $33.95 and only $5.95 for shipping. That's less than the Hotsling I saw at Target, where they didn't have my size. There were many reviews and pictures of plus-size ladies who said it was great.

I am looking forward to it coming, and I'll give a full review when it arrives!

22 August, 2008

Baby Sling/Wrap

Opinions needed. I would really like to get some sort of sling or wrap to "wear" C around the house so I can get something done. I've read some things on blogs through the years, but I never paid much attention because I didn't think it would apply to me. Well, now it does and I need advice!

I don't think I'd like the ones with all the bulky fabric, C is so tiny I'd be afraid he'd smother. But the flatter kind don't look they'd fit me, being XL and bigger in the bosom department.

Ok, Ok, I'll add a picture of C too :O)

p.s. I took him for a weigh in on Wednesday and he was up to 6 pounds 7 ounces!!

p.p.s. I don't usually let C sleep on his stomach. We had been playing on the floor and letting him have some tummy time, and he conked out so I grabbed the camera to catch a glimpse of his cuteness!

19 August, 2008

Just curious

I was curious as to what was going on last year on July, 29 - the day C was born. Here is what I was writing about then.

Also, I'll try writing a post later (I've got a fussy gas bubbly baby in my arms right now) and I'll answer some of the questions you all have asked in the comments.

18 August, 2008

Baby Shower & 100th post

Our church gave us a baby shower yesterday afternoon. Wow, I believe C has the most stuff of any not yet three week old baby in Texas! He'll be the cutest burper/spitter-upper in the three state area! I still have to count, but I think we received at least 20 monogrammed burp-towels!! My camera went kaput in the middle of the shower, so I'll have to get a picture from one of the hostesses of all the gifts displayed at the end.

Here are a few pictures of the day yesterday.

We took C to church at the very end of the service, I snuck in the back and sat in the cry room until the very end. While some announcements were being made, Hubby came back there with me and he carried C to front to be introduced. He was holding him in the air, Lion King style, and had the sound techs play, "The Eyes of Texas are Upon You." Of course all the grandmas in the congregation were worried he'd drop him! While hubby was "flying" C to the front, I went over and got D from Grandma and Grandpa from our usual front row pew. Edited: Hubby is one of the Pastors at our church, so that's why such a big deal was made of introducing C. The church has been involved in this long and difficult adoption with us every minute, so it was a joyous celebration for the whole church!
I had to really search to find the kind of outfit I wanted him to wear his first time to church. I finally found this preemie suit at Dillards, the only one they had! I took this picture right before we left for church.

Here are a couple pics from the shower.

D received several Big Sister gifts and a button that says, "I'm the Big Sister."

Here is a sweet picture of C. He likes to be swaddled, but he doesn't like his hands or feet to be confined. I had bundled him in a "burrito grande", two blankets for a double swaddle. I went in a few minutes later and he'd loosed his feet and hands even from that! Then he was just as content as could be!

p.s. this is my 100th post!

16 August, 2008

My Birthday

Yesterday was my birthday. Let's just say that I am 39, again, again.

This picture was taken as Hubby and D (and Grandma behind the camera) were singing "Happy Birthday" to me. When it was time to blow out the candles, I realized I didn't have anything else to wish for!

13 August, 2008

I'm two weeks old!

Look how smart I am, I can already count to two!
Hi everyone, it's me - Baby C. I turned two weeks old yesterday and I went to see my pediatrician. Guess what she did?! She pulled my belly button right off!!! Who does she think she is? I must say, though, that it feels much better not to have that crispy thing hanging around anymore. So, now I can take a real big boy bath!
She gave me a new kind of formula that is special just for preemies (Enfamil Enfacare) and it gives me a few more calories per bottle.
I had gained a little bit, I weighed 5 pounds 4 oz and I've grown longer! I'm now 18 & 1/4 inches now.
I need to go now, it's time to eat again!
Talk to you later!!
Baby C

11 August, 2008

You just never know where the road will lead!

All this time we've traveled this crazy long road of adopting (May 12, 2005 - July 29, 2008!), I never would have dreamed the road would lead to a location only 1.4 miles from my front door!

I also never dreamed the gift at the end of the road would be a newborn baby and a BOY at that! But what a precious boy he is.

I'm sorry I've not been on to keep you all posted. I'm sure I'll get better, but this newborn stuff is all new to me! He's so tiny and the reality of having complete responsibility over one so small is at times overwhelming, especially during one of those stretches wehre I've only had a couple hours sleep!

I'll try and post more soon. But until then I'll share some more pictures of C, our little man!

Here he is with D's spotted leopard Webkinz. If you've seen webkinz, you know they're not very big! I need to get a specific stuffed animal, like Debbie does with Izzy, so you can see how he grows. I'm ready for him to sprout a bit! Here's a "freebie" of Big Sister! These are her Big Sister flowers, and she looked so pretty after church yesterday that I just had to get a picture of her!

06 August, 2008

OK, I'll stop teasing you now . . .

Last Tuesday, just one day after we learned about our agency receiving accreditation, we had a very eventful day!!!

At a little before 2 Hubby called me from his cell phone. He was in Dallas to drop D off to visit her grandparents for a week.

He asked me if I was ready for a bombshell. I immediately thought they'd had an accident or something. But no!

He said our local OB, had called him. He had a lady about to deliver and she wanted to place her baby for adoption. She just wanted the doctor to find the baby a good home. He asked Hubby if we would be interested? He gave a little history and it sounded like "a go" to us!

So I called our lawyer, and his office phone just rang and rang. So I called his home, no answer there either. So I called our pastor's wife to get the lawyer's wife's cell phone (are you following?)

Anyhow, I just drove straight to the lawyer's office (a couple miles from my house) and waited for him to finish with a client.

While I was waiting for the lawyer, I called the doctor myself to make sure I had my facts straight before I met with the lawyer. Dr. tells me now that she'll deliver within 30-45 minutes and she wants to meet me first.

So, I hurry at the lawyer and then I drive to the hospital in a very surreal state of shock! The doctor introduces me to the bio parents and I quickly give them our life history and tell them why we want to adopt. Then they look at each other and nod their affirmations to each other. Then the doctor comes in and says, M I'm sorry to hurry you, but you really need to push. He asked if she wanted me to go out or stay in the room and she said, "no, she can stay - it's her baby."

So, at 3:20 p.m. he was born and cried pretty well right away. The nurse brought him to the bassinette right by me and I stayed right there with him. He got 9/9 on his apgar scores.

I followed the baby to the nursery and stayed with him till 3:30 a.m. when I came home to get a few hours sleep.

He weighed 5 pounds 1 oz, 17 inches long. He has lots of dark hair. He was born at 34&5/7 weeks so he is a preemie. His lungs were not quite ready, so on Wednesday morning he took a ride in the ambulance to the nearest "big" city to go to the NICU. He needed some extra time and help to have his lungs develop more fully. He did develop jaundice too, so spent several days under the bili-light. He had to stay 6 days and we came home from the hospital yesterday afternoon.

A whirlwind, miracle week for sure!!

We have a NEWBORN son!


Edited: As I went back and read over this, I realized I'd failed to mention that Hubby arrived from Dallas about 1 - 1/2 hours after C was born. I took him in to meet C and then right after that to meet the birth parents as soon as he arrived. He went home to sleep from 10:30 - 2 then he stayed with C while I went home from 3:30 - 6. We stayed with him all night in the nursery, the hospital was wonderful to us. Of course there were no other babies in the nursery that night, so it was convenient.

Ready to know the big news???????

01 August, 2008

Where have I been?!

There's been some pretty interesting stuff happening around here this week. I'm anxious to tell you about it, but it'll be a couple more days. Stay tuned . . .