Friday, May 25, 2012

1 Month Old

I took some pics of Kate last week so we can watch her grow, month by month.  Can't believe how big she is getting already!  

At 1 Month Old, Kate:
  • loves her swing, walks outside, and snuggling on mommy or daddy's chest
  • hates having her diaper or clothes changed
  • is really alert when she's awake - easily grins whenever mommy and daddy talk to her
  • makes cute little sighs and coos... and occasionally, some crazy grunts :)
  • sleeps really well during the night - just up once to eat and then right back to sleep
  • weighs 9.6 lbs and is 21 inches long

aaaaaaand we're done  :)

Friday, May 18, 2012

Funnie girl

I hafta admit, we laugh at Kate a lot.  Of course we think she's beautiful, but this girl strikes some crazy faces/poses.  Here's a few...

This was her Santa pose, from the hospital
And the Cleopatra pose, also from the hospital
She sleeps with her arms/hands over her head a lot
Squished face
Making silly faces at Daddy after a bath
and just tryin to get some work done in Dad's office 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Kate's First Week

It was so fun capturing all these moments with her  :)

First outfit - lil' ladybug is dressed to leave the hospital
First car ride - headed home!
First time at home
(we had a sweet chalk drawing welcome on our driveway/sidewalk when we got home!  thanks to christyb and her cutie boys)   
Waiting for first doctor's appointment
Trying to stay warm and calm waiting for doctor (Kate HATES being naked)
First trip to Target!!!!!!!!!!!!!   :D
First bath
First family picture - John's fam is on the right, my parents are on the left... it was so great having all of us together for Kate's first week!
First walk
First church service - we were supposed to keep Kate out of crowds/germs for the first few days, so we had church at home Sunday morning.  We watched our service online with Kate - worshipping, praying and even taking communion together.  (This was my favorite "first")

Can't wait to have many more firsts with our sweet little girl...

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Kate's First Photo Shoot

We had originally planned on having a friend come and take some pictures of us in our hospital room after Kate was born.  But then she was admitted to the NICU and taken from our room... and I just figured we wouldn't be able to do the pictures as planned.  But then the night before we were released, they let Kate stay with us in the room (still hooked up to oxygen) and I wondered if we should go ahead with the pictures.  I knew it wouldn't be quite what I had previously envisioned in my head... Kate had a tube in her nose and stickers on her face... and her tube was plugged in the wall with a short cord so we couldn't move around much.  But we could either deal with what we had, or just not take pics at all.  I called my sweet friend Kristen to see if she still could come by and sure enough, she was there bright and early Friday morning to take these precious shots for us.  Here's a few of my favorites...

Kristen shot that last pic without us knowing it.  She was finishing up with Kate... and I got pretty emotional as I was telling John that I was so thankful we went ahead and did the pictures.  That even though it wasn't exactly what I had originally planned, it was absolutely perfect.  I don't ever want to forget the incredible joy, and even the trying difficulty of that week.  Because through it all, we saw - yet again - the faithfulness of our loving God through the gift of our precious daughter.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

At the hospital

The night she was born and throughout the day after, Kate had family and friends wanting to see her!  She entered into this world with all kinds of love awaiting her :)


Grandma Shaida (John's mom)

Uncle Grant (John's youngest brother)

Grandpa Shaida (John's dad) on the far right... and our friend Christy on the far left (her hubby Cody came to see us later)

Great Grandpa Stayton (John's grandpa)

Grandpa and Grandma Holm (my dad & mom)

My friend Candace introducing Kate to her daughter, Kennedy

Dustin, Emile and Kaci meeting "bebekate" (as Emile fondly calls her)

Also, our friend Kristen came to see Kate (and take pictures of her!)... ironically enough we didn't get a picture of them together :(

The next morning, Wednesday (which is when we were supposed to be released), we realized Kate was having some issues with her oxygen levels.  After some testing, she was admitted to the infant ICU and immediately put on oxygen.   The staff also found that she had a slight heart murmur and a low resting heart rate... which can often be "nothing", but caused more tests, more waiting and more evaluating over the next couple of days.  It was an emotional time, but God's peace was evident and we knew He had Kate in the palm of His hand.  The staff was amazing - they were so thorough and gracefully explained every step for us.

Thankfully, all of Kate's tests came back fine and come Friday morning the only thing keeping us there was her need for a little bit of extra oxygen.  They released us with an at-home oxygen tank... and we gladly accepted that small inconvenience, to be able to finally show Kate her new home. :)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Kate's Arrival

So I'm a little late getting this post up (been choosing to hold a precious baby instead of my laptop) but as you may have already heard, our sweet little girl is finally with us! Kate Aubrey Shaida was born on Monday, April 16th at 6:11pm. She weighed 8lbs, 12oz and was 21 inches long, with a head full of dark hair and crazy-cute chubby cheeks.

For those of you who have asked, here's some details of Kate's arrival!

My due date was originally April 17th. But back on March 26th, we found out I was 4cm dilated and 75% effaced. We thought for sure Kate would come early, so we scrambled to get the last few things in place and out-of-town family rearranged things to come sooner. We all waited with bags packed and emotions high... doctor appointments coming and going, but little progress happening. Come April 11th she still wasn't here, so we scheduled an induction for Monday the 16th. My doctor felt very comfortable with me being induced since I had been at 4cm for 3 weeks already.

John's family came out that Sunday night... we all tried our best to sleep (which I hadn't been doing much of for weeks, anyway). Then Monday morning around 8:30am, I was induced with an IV of pitocin. I hadn't had any contractions through the night or that morning, but the pitocin did it's job and they started up right away... but felt pretty mild. Then around 11am my doctor broke my water and immediately the contractions became very painful. We called for the epidural a bit after, but it took the anesthesiologist quite awhile (and 4 attempts!) for it to work. (I apparently have a slight curve in my spine that was creating issues.) Having to stay still that long, sitting indian style on a hospital bed, through very painful contractions... well it was awful. But once that 4th attempt worked, it was all worth it. :)

I rested for a few hours, watching TV with John and even trying to sleep a bit. At 4:30 I was 9cm, which was great... but my legs, feet and toes were 100% numb and we were concerned that I would have difficulty pushing. Apparently, the 3 failed epidural attempts each gave a "test" dose before we realized they didn't work... so I ended up with slightly more epidural than normal. We decided to cut my dose in half and see what happened. The pain soon set in, and at 5:30 it was very intense. So the nurse checked me and I was at 10cm and ready to push. (By the way, only one of my legs VERY slightly lost some of their numbness, so that plan didn't quite work. :) ) My doctor came in and at 5:55 I started pushing... and Kate was born quickly at 6:11pm!

*Side note - right before I started pushing, my doctor gave a final guess of the baby's weight... 6lbs, 7oz. Bless her heart - she was a bit off. :)

I got to hold her on my stomach right away, and then the nurse tended to her - with Daddy right alongside - getting her weight, length and John cutting her cord. I remember laying there watching them through my tears... overwhelmed and amazed. Seeing John elated and emotional - like he was on our wedding day. I asked him if she was Kate Aubrey or Jane Harper... and with a huge grin he said, I think she's Kate. I agreed and just like that, we had finally decided on a name.

Amazing, incredible, emotional, life-changing... all those words, even lined up together, still don't describe what that experience was like. I couldn't believe how connected I felt to her immediately; how deeply I loved her and how much I had longed for her. The entire experience is a gift I will never take for granted.

Leaving for the hospital!
Talking to my sisters... before things get started
Meeting my sweet babygirl
All cleaned up and ready to snuggle
Our first family picture  :)