Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Cesarean Awareness Month.

April is Cesarean Awareness Month.. a cause that is near and dear to my heart. This year's theme is, "Real Women. Real Lives." and is all about telling our stories.

So here it is, a condensed version of my story.

At 41 weeks 2 days of my first pregnancy, my body finally decided it was go time. I was excited that I was in labour and I had avoided the dreaded induction I was having hung over my head. In the back of my mind, I had wanted a natural birth, but upon arrival at the hospital with no birth plan, things changed drastically.

Over the next several hours I had IV narcotics, anti-emetics, an epidural that paralyzed me from the armpits down and pitocin to speed up labour slowed by the epidural. My daughter started to show signs of stress at this point (who wouldn't?) and I was wheeled into the OR for surgery.

My beautiful baby was born blue, requiring bagging to breath and a shot of narcan to counteract the narcotics during labour. She spent the next 20 hours in the NICU for observation where her blood sugar dropped and she was given formula rather than being brought to me to nurse.

And that doesn't even touch on what it's like to recover from surgery when you have to care for a newborn.

The next time around I vowed things would be different. I knew that the cascade of interventions I received during labour ultimately landed me that c-section scar. My son, 22 months later, was born drug-free into my arms following the most incredible experience of my life. I pushed out my 8 pound 9 ounce baby and I felt like super woman. :)

Meeting my daughter for the first time:

Meeting my son for the first time:

Tell your story too, every little bit of awareness can make a difference.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Birth of a Baby

The Stats:
Born March 27th, 2009, 3:47am
8 pounds 14 ounces
20 and 3/4 inches long
Baby boy Grayson

I was honoured to be invited to the birth of my friend/cousin's new little baby. As a nurse, I've been to many births, but it's so different to be there as solely a support person. You don't have to worry about charting and other nursing activities, you can just focus on being present for the mama.

What an awesome experience. I'm continually amazed at the strength women have when it comes to childbearing. 35 hours at the hospital, 21 hours of hard contractions and then to have the strength to push that baby into the world. It is awe inspiring and may I just say, my new little cousin is an adorable little man. He's so peaceful and bright... looking around and into his mother's face like no other 1-day-old I've ever seen. :)

I can't wait to see him grow. I hope my son and him become the best of friends, just like his mother and me.

It's been an exciting week!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Wildlife park

For some sunshine and fresh air, we went to a wildlife park today. It was a little chilly, but thankfully the puddles weren't frozen (a main attraction for a two-year-old I've come to discover). This park has animals that have been rehabilitated from injuries or handraised in captivity due to the loss of their mother or have been born at the facility.

I wasn't able to capture too many photos due to the above mentioned puddle jumping (although my sister is a star for redirecting):)
You can feed the deer. E had no fear and reached right in to pat her head.

Gabriel was less than thrilled with his first trip to the park. :)
I asked the peacock to shake off a few feathers for us... he didn't go for it.
The wolf that's standing is huge. He must be close to 100 pounds. He was handraised by humans and wags his tail and whimpers to get out just like any dog:
Anyway, that's what we did today!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Uh oh!!

I put G on his back on the floor and he went from a nearly-crawling position to his first independent sit! He just started to be able to sit without support for about 30 seconds earlier this week, and now he thinks he's a big grown-up baby that not only doesn't need support... but doesn't need help to get into the position at all!

It's not good to compare, but Ella was 8/9 months old and pulling-to-stand when she had her first independent sit... which is totally normal.

My babies are growing too fast! Wahhh!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Bloggy Giveaway!

Not by me, but from an awesome online friend Jamie. Free babylegs! Check it out.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

More recycled wool

Last night at "creative circle" I made this sweet wool diaper cover (in hopes that summer will soon show it's face). This was a 100% lambswool Gap sweater I found for $4 at a second hand clothing store. I used this training pants pattern which happens to fit very nicely over a diaper on a baby. I used the bottom and collar ribbing of the sweater for the trim areas. It was fun to make and it looks adorable! And I still have enough sweater to make another soaker and a pair of longies or shorties.
If you cloth diaper, it really is worth it to give recycled wool a try. It's a awesome first sewing project, and they work great!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Charity Auction

Want a chance to own your own "Little Joe"? I've knit this lovely little duo for a charity auction on Hyena Cart. They would like to be adopted to a caring home, perhaps with children, where they will be played with and loved on. :)

More information about this fundraiser and the actual auction which occurs on March 18th, 2009 can be found here http://hyenacart.com/NorthStarCreations/ (these little knit cuties will be posted sometime over the next 24 hours or so).

Happy Bidding!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Where are those pearly whites?

I've been expecting the day when G chews on my hand/arm/cheek and I feel the poke of a tooth, but nothing yet! He's doing the drooling, getting a little chin rash from the acidity, chewing on EVERYTHING, fussing some... but no tooth. Not that I'm rushing him out of that gooey gummy grin, just waiting.

Currently we have an amber teething necklace and some teething toys that I can chill, he also likes chewing on an icecube wrapped in a baby wash cloth... anyone else have good teething remedies?

Sort of on the same topic - I've been doing a lot of reading and research on when babies start solid foods. E was such an eager little eater. She started soft foods at 6 months but at 5 months she was studying us as we ate, opening her mouth as we did, trying to grab food from our hands and attempting to drink from cups. G is so not there yet. The 6 month mark is 9 days away and I don't feel like he can hold himself up enough yet, he still has the "eject" tongue reflex to spit things out, no teeth and he just doesn't seem interested.

Most current research states to take baby's cues for readiness and that starting solids between 7-9 months (or even later) is perfectly acceptable and perhaps superior to starting at 6 months, especially if they aren't ready.

So no solids in the immediate future, but I'm going to start cooking and freezing very soon!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Fun Mail and Get-Togethers

Belle and Burger is a fun blog that I've come across. She's amazingly crafty and sells her homemade goodies both online and at a farmer's market. In preparation for making baby food (oh too soon...) I decided I needed one of her awesome aprons. I received my package in the mail today and it's even sweeter in person and it was so fun to open with a little hand written note and a free card. I can't wait to cook something with it... how domestic! ;)

Edit to add an action shot for Jamie:

On a different note... Monday evening now holds "creative circle" time at my house. It's like a knitting circle, only my sister participates and she doesn't knit, she draws/sculpts/writes/builds/carves so it's a "creative circle". :) I worked on another "little joe" for a charity auction while Melissa came close to finishing a vest for her son, my sister Kim wrote a story for E and next week I hope Elaine will join us, if she's not in labour.

We drank tea and ate cookies.. it was nice!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

"Little Joe"

I was making this little guy for G as an Easter present (a teething toy really), but E has fallen in love and named him "Little Joe". I think he's too cute. ;)

Made from a pattern found here: http://jeangreenhowe.com/patterns.html

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

A Handmade Holiday

This Easter the only shopping we'll be doing could be to the yarn or fabric store. I've decided that everything the kids get this holiday will be handmade by someone. My carpenter sister will be crafting a wooden doll cradle for E and I'll sew the bedding. I'm knitting a bunny hat and doll for G. Other treasures I have found at etsy.com and hyenacart.com (both awesome places for handmade goods). And I'm sure some baking and candy making is in order!

I can't wait to share pictures of their Easter morning goodies!

Have you had or considered a handmade holiday? :)

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Relaxing, Mommy Style.

Hubby is home today so I'm taking the opportunity to hand the kiddos off and do some things for myself... you know, like taking a shower, doing art with E and making baby shoes for G. *wink wink*

I love the Robeez brand shoes. They are one of the few baby shoes that actually stay where they're supposed to. G is starting to get a little more mobile around the floor so I spent $30 a couple of weeks ago on a new pair of Robeez (with dragons - so cute). But there are also a ton of awesome tutorials on making your own soft soled shoes for your little one, so I thought I'd whip up a pair today. I used this great pattern, and here's the result:

And here's our art project:

We played with homemade playdough, in case you can't make out my beautiful scupture (ha), that's a mommy, daddy and two baby birds in a nest. Playing with dough really is just me trying to make things that the toddler requests... not always pretty.

Here's our dough recipe: combine 1 cup of water, 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil, 1/2 a cup of salt, 1 tablespoon cream of tartar and some food colouring to a saucepan and heat until warm. Remove from heat and add 1 cup of flour. Stir then knead until smooth. Store in closed container in fridge and it will last a really long time (ours is 2 months old at this point).

And one last thing: yesterday was my Mom's birthday... (happy birthday again Mom!). I made her these pillows for her couch. They are so soft and squishy! Apparently mom put them on the bed last night and Dad was complaining about having to remove them all before sleep.... men...

And the Winner is...

Today was the draw for the "I'm-sewing-too-much" giveaway .
The dramatic process: (I was going to get my two-year-old to do it, alas... nearly all twenty people can't win one diaper, haha)

The winner is Jenn MacB! As mentioned in her comment on "going green" she is preparing for the arrival of a baby this May! So I hope this diaper finds it's way well to the bum of your little one.
That was fun! I'll have to do another giveaway soon, so stay tuned. ;)