Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Settling in as a Family of 4

Gabriela's second visit (Sunday) to the hospital to see her new sister

We were discharged from the hospital on Monday right after lunch and are enjoying some time all together at home now. Eric is taking the week off to help with the transition and provide a second set of eyes and hands to make sure Gabriela doesn't poke out her little sister's eyeballs. When he's not preparing meals/cooking/cleaning, taking care of Gabriela, and helping out with Lilian, Eric is taking advantage of the opportunity to work on a few little projects around the house. And Gabriela is thrilled to get to be his little helper! With the toddler distracted and taken care of, I am getting in some serious cuddle time with Lilian and totally loving it.

Ready to leave the hospital!
Gabriela is enjoying having the baby around (at least for now with both of us home where she is getting lots of one on one time with Papai). Anytime she enters the room with Lilian or passes by her, she insists on running over and giving her kisses. Lots and lots of kisses! She is getting a little more gentle with her too. And she is completely intrigued by the whole breastfeeding thing. She just stands beside the chair and watches my every move as I get ready and nurse Lilian. I suspect it won't be long before her dolls are being fed too.

Just after arriving home on Monday
After a pretty chill Monday afternoon, we have been a little more active today. We even went on our first 'Family of Four' walk a little bit ago. The weather is supposed to be fantastic all week, and it felt so good to be outside! I'm looking forward to lots more walks together before winter gets here and we're confined to walking the mall.

Heading out for a little family walk

Gabriela, who we obviously needed to pull the sunshade over, enjoyed having the "nene!" next to her for the ride!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Welcome Lilian Scarlett!

I woke up to strong, frequent contractions at 7:15 this morning. After laboring at home in the jacuzzi tub, we made the 5 minute drive to the hospital and arrived in our hospital room at 11:30 am. Lilian Scarlett was born at 12:04. (And almost was baptized too - I nearly had her on the toilet, but that story will have to wait for now.)

Her stats:
Weight: 7 pounds 3 ounces (3.27 kg)
Length: 19.3 inches (48.8 cm)
Head Circumference: 13.2 inches (33.5 cm)

Lilian looks a lot like Gabriela did as a newborn (only with a little less hair) and is almost identical in size. We've been experiencing some serious deja vu staring at our new daughter today!

She stayed on my chest after delivery and nursed before being taken across the room to be weighed, etc. That's when the pouty bottom lip poked out.

Then she got really mad!

But quickly calmed down and we've only heard her cry twice since then!

Eric picked up Gabriela from our friends who are keeping her so that she could meet her little sister. She was less than impressed initially and just wanted to run around exploring the hospital room. But before leaving at bedtime, she got interested in Lilian and wanted to touch her and give her kisses. She kept pointing to her baby sister and repeating "nene, nene" (Portuguese for baby) with a big smile. It was really sweet!

Lilian got her first bath about 9:30 this evening and has been fast asleep ever since.

Everyone is healthy and feeling great. We appreciate all of the sweet notes and calls we've received over the last few days and all of the thoughts and prayers that have gone out for us and the latest little blessing to our family.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

While we all wait around for Bebe Dois (Dear Child, You have 10 more hours before you are officially late...Mama isn't a big fan of tardiness, Young Lady!), here's a video of Gabriela from a couple weekends ago. It's mostly Portuguese. I thought I might add subtitles so everyone can understand, but, well, that's too much work right now. You will notice how confused she is and responds with, "Huh?" when Eric repeats a question to her in English. That totally cracks me up!

Anyway, she is munching away on a huge plum (only the third time we gave her a piece of fruit in it's entirety where she was able to eat the whole thing without help!) Eric asks her several questions including the sounds of a dog, cat, and bear, along with what a Mexican and Indian say. (No, not exactly PC, I know, but Eric has Mexican nationality so he can do that, right? And the Indian thing, well, that came from a Brasilian video with kids' songs --the only TV she gets to watch.) She also displays some of her sign language, "Potty" and "Please", at the end.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Getting Ready for Bebe Dois

Things are gradually slowing down at Z Casa as we are in the home-stretch now with this pregnancy! My due date is September 22 (Wednesday!), my body is definitely in birth preparation mode (lots of good contractions all week, baby has dropped a ton, and other aspects of readiness that I won't get into since my brothers always threaten to quit reading when I mention anything too graphic), and we have completed the most pressing of our projects (like getting the new baby room put together and decorated). So now we wait. And stay within the area code, as my midwife was not real thrilled when I told her we were in Chicago over Labor Day!

I'm planning on baby being here next week. I really feel like things are moving along - a lot more than with Gabriela at this point - and my gut just tells me that I won't be going 10 days past my due date this time. And Eric has decided that next week is a good week for him to be out of the office. So, obviously, we just need to go ahead and have the baby on her due week. But not over the weekend, as I have plans to get a couple more projects done around here. Thank goodness I'm not picky and not a planner, huh? ;)

I am feeling really good still (and yes, I did the 5K last weekend with a time of 46 minutes - no speed records or anything, but I did finish!), I'm just having trouble getting comfortable at night what with eighteen sharp pointy baby parts poking out of various locations across my abdomen and what not. I've found that by strategically positioning something like eleven pillows around myself, I can create a nest worthy of catching some sleep in. Eric just laughs at me up on my pillow-throne as he curls up on his side of the bed with his one pitifully flat (just as he likes it) pillow and laments about the days when I used to cuddle up to him at night.

Trying to cheer on the Cyclones while watching the Iowa/Iowa State game last weekend with friends. It was a disappointing day for Gabs as both Iowa State and the Georgia Bulldogs suffered losses!

Gabriela is getting back to normal after a couple tough weeks of teething. I never even knew she was teething when her first two teeth came in at 13 months. But in the last month she has cut her top two teeth, a third bottom tooth, a molar on one side, and has another molar about to pop through. I think the molars are sort of rough on her and make her quite clingy/whiny during the daytime if she is not kept distracted.

Otherwise though, she has been awesome. She is signing a ton now and adding a few "words" and several sounds to her vocabulary. She is out of diapers 100% of her awake time at home now and has gone the last week without a single accident! She signs when she needs to go potty, although I also am still suggesting that she go several times per day too to help make sure we avoid messes! Even though she is only going to be 17 months old, I was really hoping to have her mostly out of diapers before the next baby arrives. It looks like we're there - YAY!

This week we decided to try transitioning her into a toddler bed too. We moved the crib into the baby room a couple weeks ago and just had her sleeping in the pack-n-play until we were ready to tackle moving her into the toddler bed. She's been in her little toddler bed for naps and nighttime since Monday and is doing well with it. She quite often ends up crawling out of bed and sleeping on the floor, but I don't really have a problem with that so long as she is sleeping. Her door is always shut at nap time so I don't disturb her, but we like to have her door half-open at night so we could hear her if she were to wake up. Concerned that she might crawl out of bed during the night and roam around the house (and get into who knows what) without us hearing her, we've been putting the baby gate up in her doorway overnight. It's a solution that has let us all sleep well!

It's always fun to wake up and peek in on her to see where she ended up overnight. The first morning she actually was half-under the pack-n-play fast asleep! Eric thinks the "poor thing" woke up in the middle of the night, realized she wasn't in her "bed", crawled over to it half asleep, and, when she couldn't get in the pack-n-play, pitifully crawled underneath to try and be in her proper sleeping place. I think Papai is just a great big softie. But then again, I laugh at the carpet marks she has across her face and chest after napping on the floor. It might just be that I am a bit more heartless than some . . . hehe

All in all, we're doing well around here! Hopefully we'll have some big baby news soon! And maybe, since I am mostly caught up on nesting and our projects, I will get to sit down at the computer and be a little more present in blogland too!

Friday, September 3, 2010

I do love this busy life!

One night last week, Eric and I were winding down our evening and getting ready to turn in for the night while discussing all the things we need to do/finish before Bebe Dois arrives. Our list is sort of long. It's been a really busy summer and having a 1-year old doesn't really facilitate accomplishing anything with swiftness (unless we're talking about destroying a perfectly neat and orderly room.)

After a moment of silence as we each contemplated all that we want to accomplish pre-baby and how quickly my due date is approaching, Eric looked at me and asked, "Why do we do this to ourselves?" He went on to talk about how we tend to get a little ambitious sometimes and end up completely wearing ourselves out.

Another moment of silence passed and then it occurred to me: we each married someone a lot like ourselves! We both have this "can-do" attitude and nothing really intimidates us. We both are sort of Jack-of-all-trades (masters of none) and, regardless of whether or not we have any experience in something, we each think that we can figure it out and make it happen. We both enjoy staying busy and traveling and doing things with our own two hands and not paying other people to do something we can do ourselves . . . and neither one of us seem to know how to say "no".

As I explored this thought with Eric, I concluded that our "problem" is that neither one of us ever puts on the brakes. When one of us have an idea, the other one pretty much always says, "That sounds awesome, let's do it!" instead of sometimes saying, "Don't you think we have enough going on right now? Maybe it isn't so imperative that we pick a ton of apples from Grandpa's house and core, peel, and freeze apple slices and can homemade applesauce and put up a dozen jars of apple butter."

See, I think that instead of marrying someone so much like me, maybe I should have married a couch potato who moans every time I suggest a road trip or who tells me to call a contractor when I want to re-do everything in the house. Hmmm . . . yeah, okay, that probably wouldn't work.

I'll think I'll stick with the hubby I've got and enjoy our fun, busy life! :)

And on that note, we'll be leaving this afternoon to spend the 3-day weekend in downtown Chicago. Yep, we have a ton of stuff we should be working on at the house. Sure, I'm 37 1/2 weeks prego. And sure, at my appointment yesterday my midwife said I was about an inch dilated and my cervix is soft. But we scored free roundtrip airline tickets from Burlington to Chicago that have to be used before the end of the year. And my hubby has been working really hard and deserves a little mini-vacation (from his real job and all the ones I've given him at home!) AND we haven't been on a trip without a purpose/agenda since we went to St. Louis back in February!

As much as we both enjoy our projects and working hard and zipping all over for events, we also both enjoying getting to play tourist and spending some time relaxing together as a family. Yeah, I'm pretty sure we married the right person. ;)

(Plus, we make some really adorable babies, if I do say so myself! hehehe)