Monday, July 21, 2014

iPhone Photo Update

Donut boy

Daddy's boy
All 3 of my boys

Milk drunk

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Bye Bye Bear

Coordinating binkies!
Yesterday was Bear's last day of work at Midwest Academy. My mom and dad were out for the night and when Bear came home, I lost it and cried and cried because we've never spent more than 1 week away from each other. We got to go to a little bit of a neighborhood softball picnic that we were invited to before I had to drop Bear off at the bus stop in Keokuk, IA. My parents watched the babies and we took Lachlan with us so he could see Bear get on the bus. 

I thought I got all my tears out last night, but Lachlan did this little whimper and  reached out for Bear as he disappeared onto the bus and I lost it again. I had to go to Walmart right after, and I kept my sunglasses on inside so nobody would see my messed up makeup. 

But now that I finally have all of my tears out, I'm excited for this adventure that Bear gets to have. And believe it or not, I will be able to keep in better contact with Bear now. With his old job, he worked 16 hour shifts (that usually went longer), and he wasn't allowed to have his phone on him. This caused a lot of anxiety for me when I was pregnant. Now his job revolves around his phone and he can call or text me anytime. 4 weeks sounds like forever, but my family will be here and the twins are over 3 weeks old even though it seems like they were just born so hopefully it will go fast, especially with my family here. 

Both Bear and I got priesthood blessings this morning and that helped a lot too. I believe that if we rely on the Lord, he can stretch us and compensate for our weaknesses if we really are trying our best. 

Suns Out, Guns Out

Friday, July 18, 2014

Party on the living room floor

Party on the living room floor

Bear's mom left early this morning. And he leaves tomorrow afternoon.

The twins are 3 weeks old. They are good little nursers and I can nurse them at the same time now, which significantly cuts my nursing time down. Making milk for two babies is no joke. I have to eat and drink all day and I feel like I have the metabolism of a teenage boy.

We still go down to Pageant preshow every night. Bear loves stick pulling.

I'm dreading saying goodbye to Bear tomorrow. 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Crazy Summer

We literally go and hang out at pageant every night.

I think I can honestly say this has been a crazy summer. Not only did I have a baby, but I had twins, (with a million doctor's appointments before and after the babies were born), Bear has been applying for grad school and new jobs, and he's getting ready to go sell pest control in California for the last 4 weeks that my parents are here. He leaves Saturday.

I've never spent this much time away from him. EVER. The truth of it still hasn't hit me all of the way. Luckily, I'll still have my parents and siblings here and they are all super helpful, but Bear won't be there to help me with babies in the night. I guess I just need to start going to bed earlier. I'm more worried about Lachlan who is such a daddy's boy. If he goes more than a day without seeing dad, he starts acting up. At least toddlers have no sense of time, but we may be in for a "fun" ride.

Why is my husband taking off for 4 weeks right after we had twins, you ask? Well, Bear's current job has given him a lot of experience in his field and is helping him apply for better jobs and for grad school, but it just wasn't paying enough. He loved his work, but we looked at it like a paid internship that would look good on his resume. But we need a little more cushion if Bear is going to start grad school and can't work full time for the next little while.

We're still waiting to hear back from the program he applied for at Quincy University because they just got his transcript from SVU (yes, I know we graduated in December. It's a long story on why it's taken this long). I keep thinking life will slow down. But a little relaxation doesn't look like it's in our immediate future ;)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014


My view this morning
I'm trying to get better at baby-wearing because I wanted to do it with Lachlan but never really did. My mom gave me her two ring slings when I was pregnant with Lachlan but because I was using them wrong I didn't like them. Now I'm trying to educate myself so that I'm not just leaving my babies in their bassinets all day. I love it because I can get things done because it's hands free, but I'm not feeling guilty for not holding them. 

I'm wearing Lennox right now as I'm typing actually. Good thing both babies are so light right now. Now I just need to look up how to wear both of them at the same time.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014


We are loving going down to the Nauvoo and British Pageants almost every night. They started on July 8th, and it's such a happy atmosphere. Bear can't go when he works, but I go with my family and they help me with Lachlan and the babies. I was sad at first that we didn't get accepted into the Pageant this year, but there's no way we could have worked it out with 3 tiny boys. So I just enjoy it as an audience member. We sit on benches and watch Mia and Noah fiddle in the band, and I can nurse the babies while we sit and visit with church members from all over the country, and sometimes out of the country. I love meeting new people and getting out and about. Maybe I should be resting at home, but I'm always afraid of what I'm going to miss out on!
We love love love the British Pageant which is new this year. I relate to it because it tells the story of my ancestors.

Then Lachlan was Stitch for most of the day yesterday.

Monday, July 14, 2014

My life right now

My life consists of feeding babies right now. But I'm okay with that. Because the time is going by too fast. I have the babies on the same feeding schedule and they only woke up twice last night to eat and went right back to sleep. Lachlan is a really good sleeper too so I can't complain. Having my mom here to help has been such a blessing. I didn't realize how much I needed the help of my family until they got here. Family is so important.

The twins are so small right now that I feel like I'm going to break them and I can't imagine them big enough to roll over, sit up, and crawl. They have both finally learned to latch every time and I'm so grateful that I'm able to breastfeed them, even if I end up needing to supplement later. We blessed them in church yesterday because Bear's mom is in town. Both boys slept right through them. Lachlan screamed through his whole blessing and of course started screaming through his brothers' and my mom had to take him out of the chapel. Their blessing outfits were way too big for them!

Lachlan looks HUGE now. And he feels so heavy and his diapers are giant! He is a little jealous, but hasn't done anything to worry me yet. He likes to take the babies' binkies and blankets but gives them kisses, pats their heads, and tries to give them their binkies when they cry. He's going to have a lot of fun with them when they get older.

And...getting out the door literally takes 15 minutes. And that's just buckling carseats and loading up the car.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Twin Birth Story

I want to write down this story while it's still fresh in my mind.

HERE is Lachlan's birth story if you want a comparison.

Just like with Lachlan's labor, I had been having lots of Braxton Hicks for at least a couple of weeks before I went into real labor. Sometimes I'd get a little crampy, sometimes they'd start to come regularly, and some were strong enough to take my breath away. But they'd usually start at night, be mild enough that I could sleep through them, and stop once I got up in the morning. The nights that I went on walks with my mom seemed to make the Braxton Hicks a little stronger. 

My goal of 35 weeks came and went. I officially didn't have to go to Peoria any more - for check ups or the delivery. It just turned into a waiting game and I guessed that the boys were both over 5 lbs. My mom was there, and we were shooting for the weekend that of 35 weeks or 36 weeks because then Mia wouldn't be gone at Girls Camp and would be able to babysit Noah, Susie, and Lachlan, especially if I had to go during the night.  Also, my doula wouldn't be on vacation. But Lachlan got sick the night of Saturday the 21st and there was a crazy storm that made the power go out for a few hours Sunday night so I guess it wasn't for the best. I was having some pretty strong Braxton hicks that Sunday night, some enough to take my breath away and sometimes I felt a little crampy so I was hoping they'd say I was in labor at my scheduled Monday morning appointment but the nurse just said it's "irritability". That bummed me out. 

Monday night I had a meltdown because I was so uncomfortable and felt like I was past due. I wondered if I was going into labor soon on Wednesday because I felt extra tired/low energy that day and was having more Braxton Hicks during the day, instead of the regular ones at night. We went to Noah's scout pack meeting Wednesday night and I had Bear look up acupressure points to rub to send me into labor. We tried them with Lachlan and nothing happened. But maybe they worked this time, because I woke up at 4 am Thursday morning the 26th with some back labor. 

The contractions were about 5 minutes apart, very similar to Lachlan's labor. Again, I got out of bed a lot because I have to move when I'm in labor and I wanted to let Bear get as much sleep as he could. Bear had a job interview that morning in Carthage and I was supposed to go in for an NST (non-stress test) anyways so I was even thinking that maybe I still could ride out the contractions in the car while Bear was in his interview, then we'd go to the NST and then they could tell me if I was in labor or not and we'd be at the hospital anyways. I packed the hospital bag just in case. I took a warm shower to let the water run on my back. I woke up my mom at about 5:30 to tell her I thought was in labor. I soaked in the tub for a while too. My water never broke, but soaking in the tub/taking a hot shower always seems to make my labor really progress because I could tell this was the real deal even though I hadn't been keeping track of the contractions. I knew they were coming very consistently and getting closer than 5 min apart.

Our dilemma was Mia wasn't home to babysit. I really felt like I needed to get to the hospital, so Bear called the emergency room, tried to get a hold of my midwife (and failed), gave me a priesthood blessing right before we left at 6:30 am and my mom stayed behind to figure out what to do with the kids. Luckily there's no worry about bad traffic at any time of day on the way to Carthage and Bear sped the whole way. What normally takes a little over 30 min, took us just over 20 minutes. I knew Bear was nervous because he was talking about the corn growing in the farmers' fields the whole way there, even though he wouldn't care about it in a normal situation. We got to the hospital about 7 am and could tell my labor was progressing faster than Lachlan's was. And I got proved right. The contractions were so close I could barely walk into the emergency room and the nurse there asked how I was feeling and I couldn't even talk to her. She said my face looked like I was in labor, but that happens to a lot of people and this might trickle off and they might have to send me home. I still couldn't say anything through all of this because I was trying to be calm and relaxed. But I knew this wasn't just going to trickle off.

I wanted to get checked right away, but she slowly hooked me up to the monitor and seemed to take her own sweet time to check me. Then all pandemonium broke loose. I hear her say, "I'm having a hard time finding her cervix....wait...she couldn't be fully dilated, could she?!!!! Call Dr. Jones right now!!!!!" as she runs out of the room. It ends up I was at an 8, so not fully dilated, but this was the real deal. We called my mom and she quickly found someone to check on the kids and she came as fast as she could. I had asked her to take picture of the labor and delivery.

 I already knew this ahead of time, but I had to deliver in the OR just because there is such a greater risk for an emergency c-section with twins. They immediately wheeled me in there and my doctor had to get woken up on the phone, and he drove there going 110 miles an hour from his home in Quincy. The other OB in town - Dr. Davis had to come in the mean time and him and Dr. Jones were both there for the delivery. 

Let me tell you, it's not very relaxing to deliver naturally in an OR with the bright lights, on a super skinny and hard OR bed, and seeing my mom and Bear in scrubs. Between my epidural with Lachlan (and not being able to feel how I was supposed to push) and his giant head getting stuck in the birth canal for 3 hours, I wanted to try going natural so that I could push faster and I knew that there was no way their heads were going to be as big as Lachlan's. But my contractions were killing me. So I got an Intrathecal - still administered like a shot in my back, but right into the cerebrospinal fluid instead of between two disks. It was enough to take the edge off of the pain, but I could still feel the contractions and where I needed to push. They broke my water and Orson came out in 2 rounds of pushing/contractions. That was at 8:38 am. It all happened so fast and it was crazy to think that if there was only one baby, I would already be done. 

Everything looked good with Orson, but now we really needed to focus. They gave me drugs to slow down my contractions to be able to monitor the situation and figure out what needed to be done. We were hoping Lennox would turn head down after Orson was born, but he turned breech. Dr. Jones hadn't delivered a breech baby vaginally since his residency and didn't feel comfortable doing it. Neither did I. At this point, they kicked my mom out of the OR. We really didn't want a C-section either. But Dr. Jones was able to turn Lennox completely around because there was so much room in my uterus. It was crazy to see how hard he was straining to turn him, but it didn't really hurt me. They were also worried that there was a lot of fluid under Lennox and a little bit of the cord. So they were worried that if they broke my water again, the cord would get in the way. But it got out of the way and he dropped way down where he was supposed to be. My contractions were slowed to down to every 15 minutes at this point, but because everything had turned out perfectly they gave me Pitocin to start things back up. I only closed back up to a 9 and it didn't take long to get my contractions back to 2-3 minutes and back open to a 10. Dr. Jones wanted me to hold on and not push through a contraction but I couldn't help it and out popped Lennox super quickly too. At 10:48 am. 

And that is the story of how Orson Foster (5 lbs 8 oz) and Lennox David (6 lbs) came into this world. There were a lot of similarities in their labor and Lachlan's (including throwing up my breakfast), but the pushing was a completely different experience. The only issue was I seemed to have a reaction to the Intrathecal and my face was super itchy during and after delivery. There was no rash, but I couldn't stop touching my face - especially my nose. And I was so thirsty and hungry during delivery but then I kept throwing up every time I tried to eat again that night. So now my face is all red and blotchy and my nose is rubbed raw but I have an appetite again and haven't thrown up all day today. Lennox has a tiny bit of jaundice but they are super healthy otherwise. They literally want to eat all day and all night. And we can go home tomorrow!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day 2014

Dear Lachlan,

I am writing you another letter this year on Mother's Day.
So much has changed in the past year.
I'm not a full-time student anymore.
I'm a stay-at-home mom.
Dad doesn't work seasonally anymore, he has a regular job.
We have both graduated SVU.
Our diplomas should be coming in the mail soon.
Since last Mother's Day, you've learned to sit up, crawl, stand, walk, run, you've been weaned, and you sleep through the night.
You have a set schedule and I don't have to yank you around to dad's baseball games, to class, or to babysitters anymore.
You're not a baby anymore.
And you won't be my only baby anymore.
You're still healthy.
You love to help me clean.
You copy everything dad does. You're such a daddy's boy.
You love to play baseball because dad does.
You love cars, trucks, balls, sword fighting, and shooting things.
It's so fun to see what you pick up from me and dad.
It's also fun to see your own little personality showing through.
You're so serious and thoughtful, but you have a silly side. And a naughty side.
I still don't think you understand that there are two babies in my tummy.
Hopefully it won't be too big of a shock for you.
You love nursery and are almost 18 months old.
You love other kids and you're such a people person.
This gives me hope that you'll love to help me and dote on your twin brothers when they come.
Although you're not old enough to give me your little crafts, flowers, cards, or breakfast in bed, and you have yet to say, "I love you, mom!", I want you to know that I love you.
And that you will always be the baby that made me a mom.
Thank you for another wonderful Mother's Day.
I love you.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

New New Job

Bear just switched jobs to working at Midwest Academy. It's a therapeutic boarding school for troubled teens. Which is exactly what Bear wanted to be all along. He works 16-18 hour shifts straight, but then has whole days off in between so that we can go have fun during the week, not just on the weekends. But yes, this means that his schedule is different every week and he'll have to work Saturday and Sundays sometimes. Bear was really unhappy with his sales job and the pay is about the same. It's a little frustrating that we didn't start with this job, but sometimes you have to go down one road to realize that it's the wrong one. Like Jeffrey R. Holland talks about in this Mormon Message:

It's only his second day of work, but it will be interesting to see where this takes us. I keep getting asked if we plan to stay in the area, and I guess we haven't thought about it deeply yet. The biggest goal was to finish college after we got married, and we're taking things one step at a time. We've lived so many places just since we've gotten married, and both of us moved a lot growing up. So I know that we could learn to live anywhere. One thing I do know for certain...I miss Virginia. I think the middle East Coast is my favorite.

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

iPhone Photo Update

Someday, I'll get a real camera.
This was still in VA. Big Bear and Little Bear watching TV together.
Meeting Santa for the second time. Last time he was 2 weeks old.
Santa Baby.
He loves baseball caps.
Christmas Morning with his new blue moccs and car.
Despicable Me 2!
Grandpa and Lachlan have matching grey sweaters! (bought at different times)
Happy New Year!
Grandpa's headphones
Playing with blocks.
How Lachlan puts on sunglasses.
Lachlan had a low-grade fever. Probably teething-related.

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Twin Facts

Some facts about twins:

  • It's more likely that your morning sickness will be worse.
  • More than 50% of twins are born preterm (before 37 weeks).
  • With a single baby, the average delivery is at 40 weeks, with twins it's at 35 weeks.
  • A single baby's average birth weight is 7 lbs, twins are 5.5 lbs on average.
  • You're twice as likely to get preeclampsia with twins
  • You're more likely to have gestational diabetes with a twin pregnancy.
  • One twin can be much smaller than the other because of placenta problems or because of twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (when identical twins share a placenta and the twins pass blood between each other, making it uneven).
  • It's healthy to gain 25-35 lbs with a singleton pregnancy, but with twins 37-54 lbs is healthy. I need to be gaining 1 lb per week in the first half of pregnancy, and more than 1 lb per week in the second half. Yikes.
  • Because it's less likely for both twins to be head-down, C-section births are much more common with twins.
Now do you know why I'm a little stressed out?

Credit: Your Pregnancy and Childbirth: Month to Month, Fifth Edition

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Real Adult Life

Bear started his training in DeKalb on Monday. He left Sunday afternoon and will be back late Friday night. He says the training is intense because they squished 6 days worth of stuff into 5 days. Bear is literally busy all day and we get to talk late at night when he's finally back to the hotel. Man, there are perks to having a post-college, full-time adult job, but there are cons too. I can't imagine how lonely I would be without my parents and siblings right now. Okay, enough with the whining!

One of the great things about living in Nauvoo is the temple is RIGHT there. It was really hard to go to the temple in Virginia (especially with little kids). With the temple being 3.5 hours away, we either had to leave Lachlan with somebody ALL day, or bring a babysitter with us - which was hard to do on Ward/Stake temple day when everyone else wants to go to the Temple too. Now I just need to make sure I don't take it for granted.

I admit, it has been hard for me to get used to being a stay-at-home mom. I'm not dying to go back to school by any means, and I'm actually still pretty burnt out. When people ask me how I did it, I honestly don't know. I'm not a super woman. All I know is that I finished in the nick of time too - I seriously would have had to drop out with the twins. And although I hated having two very time-consuming things that needed my attention - motherhood and school (and they both always seemed to need attention at the same time), now I feel a little useless. I know how important motherhood is, and I'm glad I can give all of my attention to Lachlan now. And I know I need to stay home for all three kids soon. But I can't help but feel like half of my identity (a student) was taken away. Now, I'm just a mom. Real adult life starts now. After my family leaves for Korea, I won't have much socializing or adult conversation. The whole time that I've been married, I've been a student. First, I was a student. Then a student and wife. Then a student and mother. Now, just a mother. I have to keep readjusting my identity every year or so. So I know I'll get used to it eventually, but with non-stop school since I was a little girl, this is going to take some time to adjust to.

I DID NOT like the latest Downton Abbey episode. I know it wasn't graphic, and Julian Fellowes has his excuses "“The whole point of the way we do things on Downton is we don’t do them gratuitously. We are interested in exploring the resultant emotions and the effect these things have on people.” But at what point is he going to stop? He has to keep taking it up a notch. What point is too much?

The weather has warmed up in Nauvoo and our kitty survived. I'm kick-starting my Mary Kay business again and trying to reorganize everything.

Monday, January 06, 2014

A New Year

Happy New Year!

It has seriously been too cold outside! I keep wanting to go on walks outside, but I'm going to freeze to death if I do! After all the lecturing I gave people to workout while they're pregnant, I have done nothing. People keep asking me if I'm doubly sick with these twins, but luckily I'm not. I was definitely tired while I was pregnant with Lachlan, but I think I'm doubly tired this time instead of doubly sick. I'm sleeping 10 hours at night. I fall asleep between 9-10 pm. Which is weird for me because I usually stay up until midnight. I have the opposite of insomnia. If I sit down too long, I fall asleep. I get tired after little tasks. Sometimes I have to sit down while I'm brushing my teeth in the morning because I don't have enough energy to stand up. I know that working out will probably give me an energy boost, but it's really hard to motivate yourself when just thinking about getting ready for the day makes you want to go to sleep again.

I usually feel the most nauseous at night, right before I pass out on the couch while we're watching something. Every morning, I have to ask Bear how the movie or TV show ended. And Bear has to carry me to bed every night. I think the nausea is my body forcing me to go to sleep. Besides not wanting to stand up to brush my teeth, I wish it didn't have to be a daily thing because I almost throw up every time I brush. I try to stay away from the back of my throat, but brushing the front of my teeth irritates my gag reflex. I'm 11 weeks, almost to the second trimester. I just look a tiny bit bloated, but I'm not really showing yet. Which kind of surprises me. I thought with it being my second pregnancy and twins, that I would start showing earlier. At least by now. But who knows, I might pop tomorrow.

Yesterday was Fast Sunday, and Susanna Grace saw me making breakfast for myself and asked me if I was going to fast. I realized that I haven't fasted in almost 2 years because I was pregnant with Lachlan, and then I nursed him for a year. So her question made me think to myself, "because I just finished nursing, this should be my first month to start fasting again!" And I felt like a horrible person for being so out of the habit of fasting and not remembering myself. It took me a few minutes to remember that I'm pregnant again. This happened when I was pregnant with Lachlan too - sometimes I forget that I'm pregnant when I'm not feeling super sick, I don't have a huge bump, and I don't feel any baby kicking. That will change soon when I'm the size of a whale though!

Our good news is...Bear got hired at American Marketing! He'll be selling advertising to towns around us. He has to memorize a page-long script before his first day (on Jan. 13th), so he's a little stressed. He also has a week of training and a day long conference that the company has every year, so he'll be gone for 9 days. Luckily, I'll have my parents and siblings to help and we're very excited and grateful - especially because we'll have medical insurance for the twins. I haven't been to the doctor since we've moved, but now that we have the insurance and I'm doing my homework, I'll set up an appointment soon.

My family is really into watching Foyle's War at the moment, and of course Downton Abbey Season 4! Also, my younger siblings were supposed to go back to school today, but it was cancelled because of the low temperatures. The thermostat is set at 72, but Bear and I still had to sleep with a space heater in our room last night and there's ice on the inside of some of the windows. The kids have been blowing frozen bubbles outside and throwing boiling water out into the negative degree air and watching it disappear (turn to steam). I started reading about freezing to death on the internet last night, and it made me really happy that we have a warm house. I don't know if our kitty survived out there though :(