Saturday, December 29, 2007

She's Here!

Jamie Susan Hill arrived this morning at 10:36 a.m. Weighing in at 6 lbs. 12 oz. and 20" long. Full of dark hair! It was quite the experience for me to be in there watching and waiting with Sam. I've seen lots of deliveries as a surgical tech but it's a very different experience when it's someone you love having that baby!

If anyone wants details, read further...Sam had her routine appointment yesterday afternoon and after that exam she went home and was feeling some contractions as well as bleeding. Mom took her to the hospital around 6:30 and Marcus (baby daddy) met them there. She hadn't dilated much but was very uncomfortable. The hospital literally had no rooms to put her in so she stayed in an exam room for the evening after they gave her a shot to help with the pain and let her go to sleep to get some rest. If she didn't progress past a 3 they would send her home in the morning. So I stayed with her til 2:30 am and when Marcus returned I went home (assuming she'd be going home in the morning too). (Mom had already gone home to get a few hours sleep before she had to work today.) I got a phone call from Marcus at 5 am that Sam was 6 cm dilated and they were going to be giving her an epidural. Well, baby is coming today!

So I called mom, who was at work (she couldn't sleep so she went in the office at 2:45 am!), and we all met back at the hospital, where Sam had her epidural and was feeling no pain. By 7:30 she was at a 9, however the doctor was in surgery this morning and they didn't want to break her water until he was out. She quickly dilated to a 10 and was completely effaced, and still no doctor. She wanted to push but had to breathe through it instead. Finally after 9 the nurse is able to break her water and the doctor got there and they started prepping the room for the big event. I decided I would videotape and take pictures as those are special memories!

And so after a half hour of pushing and a lovely episiotomy (mom and I think the doctor was a little too quick to snip instead of letting her stretch more on her own...hey you read further, this is the details!) the little peanut was born at 10:36 am. While mom was being stitched up I took lots of video of her getting her apgars and weighed and measured and getting her erythromyacin and her Vit. K shot so Sam could watch it later.

When I left, everything had been cleaned up, Sam was ordering room service as she had been NPO for a good 24 hours, and she was feeding Jamie her first bottle and she's a good burper too!

Since I had taken pictures with Sam's camera I don't have them to upload here. Troy, Lucy and I will be bringing her some lunch tomorrow and we'll bring our camera to take some pictures and I'll be sure to upload some then.

It is very surreal to be an aunt. I assumed it would happen a little bit later in my life. When I heard that Sam was pregnant back in September it was very hard news to take. I still think of her as my baby sister who needs to be taken care of, but now she has her own person that needs her to take care of them! I will pray for continued health for the baby, that Sam's butt heals nicely and that she enjoys motherhood to the fullest!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

I thought I would post some pictures of the holiday celebrating we've done over the past few days. It feels like a weekend to me, hard to believe tomorrow is Wednesday! The festivities started on Friday night - I made soup for dinner and the in law's came over with video rentals in hand. We watched two of the stupidest movies ever made. So stupid that we laughed through most of it. The first was "Midnight Clear" and the other was "Mr. Bean's Holiday".

Saturday was Christmas over at Troy's parent's in the evening. The gifts were abundant and the food was excellent. Here is a picture of our dinner - Alaskan Halibut (caught by my parents this summer) which is in of itself to die for, along with asparagus wrapped in bacon. Lucy took a nice nap during dinner so she would be well rested for all the activity that was to come. I would have to say she was a pretty good kid. She played nicely while everyone opened gifts, which took a couple hours I think, and didn't fuss at all. She made out like a bandit! Here is a picture of her in the new toboggan she got from Uncle Eric. As well as a picture of Eric in his new cooking pants! I think everyone can use cooking pants! Once they invent the total bodysuit made of apron material, I think I'll get one of those.

After gift opening we had chocolate lava cake, my contribution, which turned out pretty tasty! Here is Lucy in the aftermath:

Sunday was church and then we all had lunch together and napped in our respective chairs. I made foods for Christmas Eve while Troy and Paul watched the Vikings game.

Christmas Eve...we headed over to my grandparents (my step-dad's parents) in Roseville for the afternoon, did the usual, ate, opened gifts, played cards. Then headed to Lake Elmo to my cousin's home for my dad's side of the family's Christmas. Things were going pretty good, Lucy was adorable in her red Christmas dress. Then as I held her I felt a rumble. I thought maybe it's just gas (Lucy, not me!) but the smell hit me. So, of course, I passed her over to Troy for a diaper change. Well, I did not hear him yelling for me until my aunt came to get me. Here is Troy holding a semi-naked Lucy up in the air. She had MAJOR blow out (teething has done this to her quite a bit lately). We're talking covered in poo and we need to figure out how to get the poo clothes off the child in such a way not to get it anywhere else so I can give her a "sponge bath" with all the wipes that we had along. So she gets naked, daddy has to hold her while I wipe off the poo, and at this point she's loving it and she gets to go in her pj's!

But besides the poo incident it was a good time - lots of good food, and Lucy made off with quite a haul there too! Our house is in Christmas Chaos right now. We've done our best to get a couple things put away, but I sat down with Lucy this morning and went through what she has gotten. Lots of educational toys, some of which will go over to Nana's Daycare, lots of cute outfits too.

We headed over to my parents' later this morning for more present opening and a nice lunch. Len and Gerane, Keith and Kathy and their son, Jeff, came over too. We sat around laughing and telling stories and played a round of the game Scene It. We headed home in the snow around 6:30 and got Lucy down to bed. And then the post-holiday organizational syndrome hit...

Knowing that tomorrow we're going shopping for organizational items (bins, boxes, whatever) and that one of my big projects is clearing out that storage room, Troy and I emptied out the storage room tonight, and my word, that little 8x10 room unpacked equals a 14x20 room full of "stuff"! My plan is to paint that room (it's the only room in the house we haven't) and purge of a lot of stuff that we haven't looked at since we've been married. We're going to do a garage sale in the spring, so that gives me incentive to get things cleaned out. And our next organizational project is the "craft room". It's huge and needs to become a craft room, play room for Lucy and eventually my office (if we have more kids, my existing office will become Lucy's bedroom). And so on... Anyone who knows me knows I LOVE to be organized. I hate chaos and clutter and junk. Quite honestly, if someone would pay me, I would organize people for a living. I watch those TLC/HGTV shows on home makeovers and people who have too much stuff taking over their lives and try to heed the outlook they have - only keep the things you use or that you love, and the things that you love, show them off, don't keep them stored away in boxes for "someday", because that someday may never come. Other than keeping things in storage that are seasonal items (clothing, holiday decor) I never understood why people keep so much "stuff" for just in case.

I do have A box of memories that I showed Troy tonight. It was actually kind of fun and funny. Some were old boyfriend letters (actually only one letter, I think I've tossed all the others since I married my last boyfriend), report cards with teacher comments that Troy got a kick out of, old corsages and programs from weddings I've been in, yearbooks, my uniform shirt from Freshman year when I caught on fire, my grade school uniform skirt where, egads, I probably had a 20" waist, and newspapers/magazines from major life events like 9/11, Columbine, the start of the War in Iraq, etc., and of course some New Kids on the Block posters. And speaking of memory lane, we watched old Christmas videos from when my sister was a baby. And I'm in all of them so it's fun to see my changing hair styles. But gosh, I look back at me and back then I had (and probably still do) this distorted body image. I have always felt I was fatter than everyone else, back then I thought I was the fattest cousin, or not as skinny as the popular girls. But when I look at those videos, and see my old uniform skirts, my gosh, I'm jealous of that girl now! I hope Lucy never goes through that and I can raise her to be proud of the body she's been given and not obsess over the number in a pair of pants!

Ok, slight sidetrack there. ANYWAY, it's been a wonderful Christmas season. It seems like it went too fast, like we just got the tree up and now it's time to clean up. But we got to see most of our families and there was lots of laughing. Sam still hasn't had that baby. My bet is on Dec. 28th. I'll keep you posted.

Friday, December 21, 2007

All I Want For Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth

and that's exactly what Lucy got! Maybe by Christmas they will be in good view for some picture taking and I will post one to the website.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Boston and Home At Last

After being snowed in (anyone from MN that was there was laughing at the "major snowstorm" that couldn't get us out of Boston) last Thursday, we (my coworker Jefe and I) checked into our hotel and headed down to the hotel restaurant/bar for some drinks and food and a round of bar trivia (we took 2nd place and won some lovely can coozies!). On Friday did some morning shopping for clothing and essentials and then we headed out on the Old Town Trolley Tour, a historical tour of Boston. That was pretty interesting and fun and I learned all about Paul Revere and Sam Adams. We saw some pretty amazing (historically) sites, such as the house Paul Revere lived in, crunched in the midst of downtown Boston, and the actual U.S.S. Constitution. If you've never been to Boston, it's a definite must. It's rich in history and I loved the old buildings and architecture. I would have loved to seen Harvard and walk the grounds, but that would be a warmer weather excursion. And not to mention going whale watching, too. The people of Boston are very friendly and I did not feel scared walking through downtown at night or taking the Subway.

I was able to score us some Celtics tickets off, where season ticket holders sell their seats. This was my first basketball game ever and it was a ton of fun! Almost up there with going to a hockey game as far as fan excitement. We had great seats off the floor, and not only was it fun to see them because, well Celtics/Irish/I'm Irish, but K.G. plays for them now too! Troy was jealous I got to go, but I did bring him back a K.G. shirt.

Up bright and early on Saturday to catch our 8 a.m. flight. I won't comment on a public forum about the other cultural passengers on this flight and their rudeness... Got into MSP at 10:15 and wanted to just rush home to see my daughter. But. We called work, because they contract out to a taxi company to drive people to/from Thomson. Then we waited and waited. After a half hour we called and they had called for a taxi but would let us know what the hold up was. Turns out the taxi company couldn't get any drivers out to pick us up. So after an hour of waiting while other taxis came and went, we got a "regular" taxi and headed back to work, where my car was, dropped Jefe off at his house, went to call Troy and my phone was dead. Now, all of that sounds minor, but after wanting to be home since Thursday, I had a mini meltdown.

But I digress...I got home, my daughter was sleeping, when she awoke from her nap I went in to get her and she just stared at me for the longest time trying to figure me out. But after being home a couple of days, we're back to our routine. There's nothing like home!

For the past few days we have taken many attempts at a Christmas photo so we can send out cards. It's just not working. Troy's head is either chopped off or we took 50 photos of Lucy last night only to not have her smile in any of them. It's getting a bit late in the game, so I'm betting we send out Happy New Year cards instead!

And then my mom called me this morning from Woodwinds Hospital. Immediately I think it's my sister, but I know she's delivering at St. John's. Well it's my step-dad. Long story short, he just got out of gall bladder surgery and should be coming home tomorrow.

Here are a couple of my favorite Lucy expressions during all this Christmas picture-taking time:

Friday, December 14, 2007

I'm stuck!

If anyone has watched the news, they saw that a great winter storm went over the east coast - Boston. It started snowing 10 minutes (TEN MINUTES) before we loaded the plane. Well they couldn't get the show on the road and us on the runway, so we deiced, and sat, and deiced, and sat, and they closed the airport, and we deiced, and sat, then we moved onto the runway, and sat, deiced again, went back to the gate, deiced and sat and then, four hours later, they cancelled the flight.

So we disembark and the attendant tells us this flight will leave tomorrow (Friday) morning and our tickets can still be used on it, but to call NWA to verify. So we get our bags, I immediately get on the phone to find two rooms at a hotel, all of which are booked, but our agent gets us into the lovely Marriott Copley hotel. Yay! So we head out and there is a line a mile deep to get a taxi. No problem! We know how to use the subway system! So we get to the hotel, baggage in tow, thru the subway system, check in to the hotel, call NWA. Um, the earliest flight I can get you on to MSP is Saturday morning. WHAT?! (now most people would love a day to play hooky, paid for by the company, but I am missing Lucy terribly and now I have to be away from her for 2 extra days???) Fine, we'll take it. So then I get on the phone again with Marriott to see if we can get another night's stay added on. We can. Whew, time for drinks at the hotel sports bar.

And so here we are. What is very lovely about this hotel's attached to a MALL! So now I don't have to worry about walking around in the same old clothing the next two days. And if the roads are cleared off we're going to do the historical trolley tour about town. And hopefully tomorrow will come without incident.

Here is a picture of Lucy from the other night to get me through until I get home. Will she even remember who I am????

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Greetings from Boston

Well, I'm here and this is what I'm missing out on:

That is Lucy's 8-month picture from yesterday and I miss her terribly, but will be home tomorrow. This morning she had her pictures taken with Suzanne, so I'll be anxious to see those. And today she's over at Jessica's playing with Ethan and Abigail!

I am in Boston on business and I commented to someone that I wish we worked nights so that we could sightsee during the day. I'd love to see Harvard and take the historical trolley tour around town, but it's dark when we leave the office. Tomorrow it's supposed to rain and sleet here so I'm hoping that doesn't effect our travel plans!

December is flying by fast. Christmas shopping has been completed, I just have some scrapbooking left to do. Our countertops got installed last week so all that we have left is the tile backsplash and it's all done! (well, not the paying for it all part)

This time of year always weighs heavily on me. I long for the days of when I was a kid when the holidays were full of anticipation and Santa Claus and Christmas Eve church. I think it's just part of being an adult. As a kid I didn't realize all that my parents and adult relatives did to make things special. Part of all of this is in the shopping and gift-giving aspect. It shouldn't be difficult to buy for people, but I've really come to realize that we should be celebrating Jesus' birthday right now as well as time with family, that is gift enough. Of course I want future years of Christmases with Lucy to be the excitement of Santa Claus too. I've already talked to my family about it and we are no longer exchanging gifts at Christmas. I think that part of the holiday really belongs to children. Let birthdays be the time we have a special day for each other, give gifts (although not necessary!)

I am reminded of the story of Mary and Martha (Luke chapter something...egads, I know it's New Testament!) where the sisters lived together and Jesus came to visit and Martha spent all her time making the house presentable and making food and preparations, etc and Mary just sat with him and listened. Martha got upset and wanted Jesus to do something about her lazy sister, to which he responded that Mary just sitting him was the best gift. It's a challenge to myself to be more of a Mary than a Martha. What is important is not giving or receiving gifts, it's spending time with those you love and making memories that will last a lifetime. And also, if you really enjoy shopping at the holidays, try adopting a family in need - the gifts you give to them will make both their Christmas and yours a memorable one!

Until next time...

Sunday, December 2, 2007

It's Wintertime!

The snow has finally fallen and looks like it's here to stay. I need it to get in the holiday spirit. But then it can go away after January (like that'll happen!).

Another weekend gone by too fast. On Thursday night we had our Silpada jewelry open house and it was a huge success! Lots of friends from town and church stopped by as well as Aunt Rox all the way from Eden Prairie and Lori from Apple Valley. Friday night was our high school girlfriends Christmas get-together. Since it was going to be chinese food I attempted to make Shrimp Toast (reminiscent of Leeann Chin's at the Depot days) to bring along (they turned out good!). It was at Emma's house in St. Paul and Emma announced her engagement to Barry. They are getting married someplace warm (I think St. Thomas or some island?) in February and then having a reception back here in May.

Saturday I spent the entire day up at church scrapbooking. I got more pages to "Troy and Lisa's (and now Lucy's) travels" scrapbook and finally made a dent in Lucy's baby book. I did some more scrapping today until I finally ran out of paper, so there's a trip to Archiver's in my future. I still have to start on this year's pages for my grandparent's album (I do about 5 pages each year) but am awaiting some more pictures and stories from the family. Another Lisa from church is a Creative Memories consultant and hosted the scrapbooking event. I saw a new product now on my wish list - the Celebrations pack. I'm a bit overwhelmed with scrapbooking for my daughter. I figure her baby book can be the first year of life in a nutshell. I purchased a Holiday pack (scrapbook, papers, etc) and will be scrapping all of Lucy's Christmases which I thought was a good idea and not too daunting. But when I saw the Celebrations pack I know that now I can scrap all of her birthdays too! Although I love spending time being creative, I also know it's a gift the whole family can enjoy for years to come and can preserve these memories on paper instead of in boxes.

Today our family ushered at the early service. I did the readings and of course didn't proofread beforehand. During the second reading I came across some crazy long word that I apparently eked out without everyone laughing. Oh here it is - licentiousness. What on earth is that? Then we took the family Christmas photo for Paul and Vicky's Christmas cards - here is a preview:

And now it's time for Sunday night shows. I just spoke to Grandma Jeanette and her and Arnie are now in Mission, TX thru March. It's 91 degrees there. As much as I love snow and Christmas, that warm sunny weather sounds kinda nice!

Seasons Greetings!