Sunday, August 19, 2012

Our Sweet Little Baby

A couple weeks ago we welcomed our third child (still cannot believe it!) into the world.

She came 12 days early.  I do think I was a little further along though, since my due date was a little uncertain.  We named her after my Grandma Belnap's side of the family.  I love my grandmother so much and she is such an inspiration to me and Robert.

She had some breathing problems in the beginning and so she was sent to the NICU.  She got a little sick.  They then put her on an antibiotic which she had to take through an IV for seven days.  I ended up getting a fever as well and was put on antibiotics too.  They believe I got sick right before I had her, but didn't know it yet.  I ended up staying in the hospital for a couple extra days.  And so did the baby.  I ended up going home three days before she did.  That was really hard.  It was so hard to have to leave the hospital with her still there.  She was in the NICU the whole time, and wasn't allowed to come in my room.  I was allowed to visit her all I wanted, but it was still hard because our other two children could only see her a couple times and other visitors had to go with Robert or me.  Since she was early, we didn't have a lot of things ready for when she came home, so at least we were able to get that done before she came home.  It was still hard, but thankfully the kids understood and our baby was safe.  I am so grateful for the doctors at the University of Utah Hospital.  It means everything when you have doctors and nurses that you can trust and feel very comfortable with!

Oh and yes we do now have a red head child, blonde child, and brown haired child.  :-)

Here are a bunch of pictures of our little sweetheart and our family:

In the NICU at first...the IV's stay better when in a baby's scalp... but so sad! 

The traditional newborn hair do by Daddy :-)

She lost some hair when the scalp IV's came out :-( 

LOVE the baby's expression!

They are all such good helpers! 

Newest family picture!

My Dad

She kept smiling and I tried for about 10 minutes to get a good shot!  But this is all I got! Still cute :-)

No more IV's!!!

Doing her car seat test... they had to make sure she'd be ok driving home... standard NICU "baby's being discharged" test

Getting her heart and oxygen sensors off!

All ready to go home!

He thought she needed a hat :-) 

Robert had to hold them still... they were so excited to go Seven Peaks!

So beautiful!

I am horrible remembering to write in my journal or update this blog.  I WANT to update it at least every week but I always forget or something else comes up to distract me from doing it.

A couple months ago we had a lesson in church about the importance of keeping a journal.  Someone made a comment that even if you do it once a year, the things you write down then are precious and will be treasured by future generations.  I know that I would love to read some of my great grandparent's journal entries.  And that even if they only wrote a little but I would love hearing about their life.  I didn't get to know them and so it would mean a lot to me.  I love talking with my grandparents and learning about their life.  So I will continue to try to write more.  But as much as I will try, if I don't do it consistently, at least I am doing SOMETHING.  

Here is a quick update on our life the last few months:

Robert finished his semester a couple weeks early.  We planned it that way so that he could help me with getting things ready for the baby.  He would come home from work, eat, work on school, and go to bed.  He did this for a couple weeks.  No it was not fun.  It was really hard on the kids and myself but we would take time to do fun things and made the time we had with Daddy count.  It definitely makes you appreciate the time you have together!  Robert also did a 5k for our son's new school.  It was a fun fundraiser the school did and turned out really good for the first year of them doing it!  I was really impressed and am really excited for our son to be involved in a school that puts a lot of time and energy into making fundraising fun and not just a boring or usual fundraiser.  Robert continues to run, at least once a week.  

I was busy taking care of two little children and being pregnant with a third.  I still cannot believe that we have three children.  I joked with Robert that I finally felt like a "real" mom when we bought a van and it had a sunglasses holder up top.  (I don't know why but for some reason having that was a turning point.)  I have been making and selling various items (bibs, burp cloths, car seat covers, cloth towel rolls, kitchen towels, etc) and it has been fun.  I enjoy it a lot.  It is a nice "me time" activity that I do.  I love everything having to do with business and so it is a fun hobby that my husband has been so sweet to encourage me in.  I have also been taking organ lessons from my Grandpa Belnap.  He is an AMAZING organist that taught at BYU for many years.  And did a million other things too... let's just say many of the Mormon Tabernacle Organists were taught by him.

Which reminds me:  We were at my grandparents house one day for my lesson.  Robert comes and watches the kids while I do my lesson and gets to talk with my grandma and learn all about her life and stories of her (yes I get a little jealous). :-)  Their fridge has many pictures of family and friends.  My grandma was pointing to the pictures and my son was telling her who they were.  Then he randomly said, "And that's Brooklyn!"  Long story short, my grandparent's are friends with someone who's daughter and granddaughter was in my son's preschool class.  Brooklyn's grandparents lived back east and came out for my parent's wedding.  They ended up moving here to Utah because of my grandparents. Crazy.  My grandparent's know everyone.  Not kidding.  

Our son finished up preschool.  Yes I cried the last morning I dropped him off.  I could not believe how fast the year went by.  Then I started thinking about how fast the next years of school would go and that pretty soon he'd be graduating high school.  Time just goes by so fast.  My Grandma Belnap is always telling me that it goes by so fast and to enjoy the moment.  It is definitely hard sometimes, but I am learning to appreciate the messes and the bazillion questions and everything else a little more.  I keep looking at our son and thinking how big he is getting.  He did just have a growth spurt and is looking more and more like a young boy, not a young toddler.  He is so smart and I am so incredibly proud of him!   When he isn't tackling people he is the sweetest little boy.  I am so glad he is mine!

Our daughter is becoming more and more independent.  She wants to do everything on her own and on her time table.  She is definitely strong willed!  But like her brother, she is the sweetest little child.  She will give me a hug if I'm feeling sad and say "It's ok sweetie.  It's ok."  So precious.  She also wants to go to school.  She keeps asking to go to her school.  I think we will end up putting her in a 3 year old program.  She is very eager to learn!  

I am so incredibly blessed to have them as my children.

As for our third child, I'll leave that for the next post. :-) 

Absolutely LOVE the smile on my daughter's face!
(Don't mind the boxes or large roll of carpet- we were reorganizing the basement and I had bought some new carpet at a yard sale for the unfinished basement.)

Our son's birthday cake.  I think he really liked it because he requested it for next year's birthday as well :-) 

Monday, February 20, 2012

Since school was out today I wanted to do something a little special with the kids.  My son only goes to school 3 times a week but it still feels like a 'break' from school when he's out even for just one day!  Weird I know.  

We started off by dropping off some muffins at Robert's work and then running over to Ikea and getting a duvet set... which my husband informed me he really doesn't like.  Well at least I like it right? :-) 

Then we went out to eat at Pizza Pie Cafe with my mother in law, step father in law, and brothers and sister in law.  My brother in laws are so sweet with my kids.  They got them food and helped them eat.  Really so sweet.  We were going to go see a movie but it sold out :-(  So the kids and I went over to my parents house.  

My dad absolutely adores my daughter.  I think he would watch her all the time if he could.  I mean take her to work with him, everything.  If I know I'm coming down to Provo I will tell my dad and he will come home early from work (if he doesn't have to teach and he still works from home while she's there).  If I don't tell him and he finds out I get in trouble :-).  It is really so sweet.  Especially since my daughter loves him so much too.  She will go to him over everyone.  

He came home and my daughter immediately ran to him and said, "Virus!"  My dad studies viruses and likes showing my daughter pictures of them.  She loves it (of course).  She kept repeating it while we were all laughing because she wanted to see the pictures so badly!  And the best part about it is, she points out the pictures of the viruses!  It's not just some big ball to her.  They looked at pictures for a while and then she started drawing her own viruses.  It was really sweet.  

My dad seemed to be excited that she was learning so much and decided to teach her how to do the United States puzzle.  When I was her age he taught me all the names of the states and where they went on the puzzle.  You know the real ones where the shapes of the states are all cut out.  It was so cute to hear her say the names of the states.  Apparently they had an argument over South Carolina though because my daughter said it was a slice of pizza not South Carolina.  (It is shaped like a triangle and we just had pizza for lunch).  :-)  

I love watching my dad with my daughter.  I wonder sometimes if it was how my dad was with me.  I think it must be really similar.  I know for my husband, our son and daughter mean the world to him.  Watching them read, play, and laugh together is one of my favorite things to do.  It is so sweet.  So beautiful.  Same with my dad.  

I am so grateful that I have such love in my life.  And that my completely worn out children are now finally, after much screaming and crying, asleep.  :-) 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Ok finally back to blogging again.  I've been spending my time doing taxes (they're done woohoo!) and being sick.  Not fun.  Still feeling sick but doing better :-)

Since the kids and I have been sick for a week we've been watching a lot of movies.  I can always tell when my son is really sick because he wants to just lay down all day.  And he doesn't do that.  EVER.  haha.

We watched "Kung Fu Panda 2" and oh my gosh do I LOVE that movie.  I really do.  No I don't like the violence (or the cheesiness) but I love the message it conveys.  If you haven't seen it check out the IMDB page for it or just rent it. ;-)

The movie is basically about overcoming the bad things that happen to you in life, and what can happen if you let them fester instead.  

Some of my favorite quotes are (from IMDB again):

"The only thing that matters is what you choose to be now."

"Your story may not have such a happy beginning, but that doesn't make you who you are. it is the rest of your story, who you choose to be..."

Shen: How did you find peace? I took away your parents, everything, I scarred you for life... 
Po: See that's the thing, Shen, scars heal. 
Shen: No they don't... *wounds* heal. 
Po: Oh, yeah... what do scars do? They fade, I guess... 
Shen: I don't care what scars do...! 
Po: You should, Shen. You got to let go of the stuff from past - because it just doesn't matter! The only thing that matters is what you choose to be now. 

Maybe it's just the point I'm at in my life or the things that have been happening the last few years that have really made me realize how important this concept is (and how much I want my children to understand it).  Everyone has bad things happen to them.  But everyone has the ability to get over them and become a better person because of them.  Even if someone else does something to you.  Even if you have/had NO control over the events that are happening in your life.  Because the reality is, is that you DO have control.  YOU are the one that reacts to the event.  To the change it brings to your life.  You DO have control over that part of your life. 

In this story Po couldn't control what happened to him or his real parents, but he decided that it didn't matter.  He was going to be the person HE wanted to be.  Not let his anger or sadness drive him, like Shen did.  

Watching this and thinking about it reminded me of something my son said to me a while ago.  We were at Costco and I was having a really hard time with some of the things that were going on in our life.  I was feeling so discouraged and like it wasn't ever going to get better.  As he was helping me put the cart away, there was a bump we had to go over to get into the "cart corral".  We weren't really talking but he said, "It's just a bump Mommy."  And it literally made me stop.  I think children have a unique way of knowing when people are having a hard time.  And what he said really helped to put things in perspective for me.  What I was having a hard time with was "just a bump".  It wasn't something I could control or do much about but I could control how I reacted to it.  I could let it destroy my life or I could recognize that it was JUST a bump I needed to walk over.  

Needless to say, I took a long breath out and couldn't stop smiling.  :-D 

Thursday, February 2, 2012

An Update on My Daughter

Long story short:  My daughter is fine!

She has a murmur but it should go away in a couple years.  If not, we'll go back.  No big deal.  I'm not worried. :-)

She also has a big heart for her age, but not enlarged.  Kind of like being at the top percentile of her heart size without it being too big for something to be wrong.  Just like how some kids are taller than others but it's nothing to worry about.  

We went to the pediatric cardiologist today and did another EKG and an ultrasound.  My daughter didn't even have to be put out!!!  But then again they weren't doing what they had told me they'd probably do in the first place, but either way I'm happy.  She got to watch "Tangled" during the 30 minute ultrasound and WAS SO GOOD!  She sat there so still the whole time!  I am so proud of her!  It was really neat to see her heart.  You could see everything!  The valves, chambers, and even some of the blood flow.  It was really quite interesting.  

It was such a weird feeling being so worried and literally one little thing happening to being completely relieved.  Not complaining... it's just a very strange feeling.  It's like when you have a baby and leave the baby with Grandma for the first time.  You feel like you are supposed to have someone/something with you.  In this case a huge burden was taken off my shoulders.  :-)

I feel a little dumb being so worried and worked up but I was going off of everything the doctors told me.  I was going off of their medical opinions.  They gave me their best opinions and honestly I want them to be safe rather than sorry.  I'd rather go through all these tests and find out everything is okay than to not go through them at all because a doctor was only a little concerned but didn't want to trouble me.  There are too many doctors that cater to what a parent wants rather than what a child needs.  We did what we needed to do for my daughter and that is the important thing.  

The view from the room at the cardiologist... neat isn't it?

We went to Jamba Juice after :-)  She loves "fruit ice cream". 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Checkup and Heart Problems

I took my daughter in for her check up last week.  Everything seemed fine until he got to listening to her heart.  He kept on listening and listening; and having her switch positions; and listening more.  Having done several child checkups before I knew this wasn’t normal.  I started getting really worried.  He was listening for so long! 

Finally he asked me if she’d ever had any heart problems.  I said no.  He said she had a murmur.  One that sounded like a Stills Murmur.  One that is supposed to go away in a couple years.  No big deal.  But we'd better make sure it isn't anything serious.  

He ordered an EKG and an xray to be done.  I wasn’t too worried, but was nervous.  We did the EKG and xray and got a call from our pediatrician the next night.  EKG came back fine.  But the xray showed an enlarged heart.  Which means something is causing her heart to not function properly.  Can be really serious or not that big of a deal.  Most often it is curable. 

So tomorrow I have to take my daughter in to a pediatric cardiologist.  He will probably order more tests.  Including one in which my daughter will have to stay completely still for 45 minutes.  She is two.  And VERY active.  Not going to happen.  And this terrifies me but they will probably have to use anesthesia.  I don’t know if I’ll be able to watch that.  I have tried to think of every solution to keeping her still… movie(s)… candy … teddy bears…books… ANYTHING.  I don’t want them to do that.  But could I keep her still for 45 minutes?  30 minutes at the most.

Precious moments in life <3

Is my heart broken and aching?  Yes.  I know that there are so many things that could go wrong.  And it terrifies me.  It’s one thing for an adult.  That is stronger.  But my little two year old?  I am so scared.  I am trying so hard not to think about what could happen, but what I need to do for her.  How I need to be strong for her.  So SHE doesn’t get scared.  But I’m still scared. 

But I do know this.  Whatever happens I KNOW that I am going to be with my family forever.  That death isn’t the end.  That I will get to see all the wonderful people that have passed away again.  It is comforting and really the only thing keeping me sane right now.  I am so grateful that I belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and for the plan of Happiness.  For the Lord that was crucified so we could live with Him again.  

So.  We will get through this.  I love you sweetie.  

Some Pictures

Some of these pictures are really old... and I apologize for the quality... these are from my phone :-)

I caught my son checking himself out in the mirror... and making he's about 2

Gotta love playtime with Uncle Joel... and fair warning... if you teach my son to squirt water/blow straw wrappers/throw something at someone... he WILL remember it... and do it to you! 

Fishing with Daddy

Our daughter was only a couple months old here... I love the looks they are giving each other! Pure love... 

He wouldn't stop making that face for weeks!  But love how much they love each other!


Yep... love :-)

We walked home from preschool one day and he insisted I take pictures of him all the way home... so of course I did!

Do I really need to say anything?  haha!

She actually was flat on the ground... but moved too fast! She was going to get the ball!  No matter what! 

I love it when they smile!

And just so you know we actually exist... Harry Potter 7 Part 2 date night!