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Kate & Reese

Updated: 2018-03-07T13:58:27.871-06:00




I got the results of my biopsy early Thursday afternoon.  Praise the Lord, it was benign!  It's a small fibroadenoma, just as the doctor had hoped it would be.  We will leave it in there and it will continue to be monitored with my MRIs and Mammograms every 6 months.  With the titanium clip inside of it, they will be able to easily note any differences that may occur with time.

However, I don't know that we will ever get to that "over time" point.  I'm now considering doing my preventive mastectomy this year.  I don't even know the likelihood of such a thing, but we shall see.  I have appointments scheduled in August with one breast surgeon and one plastic surgeon, and I think I'm going to make some calls tomorrow to make appointments with another set.  I just want to hear several opinions on which surgery will be best for me, see who I click best with and such.  I just feel somewhat ready to get it over with, stop feeling like a ticking time bomb, and move on with life.  Plus, we've already hit our medical deductible this year so if I were to do the surgery soon, it would cost significantly less than in the future.

So that's where we stand, I don't have cancer.  Whew!  I probably won't have much to update until after I meet with the surgeons, and hopefully I'll have a lot more answers in August!



I survived and made it to the other side!  It wasn't bad at all.  The biggest disappointment was that they wouldn't let Jeff come back to be with me.  Are you kidding me?!  I wish they would have told me that yesterday.  So he pretty much wasted a half vacation day to sit in a waiting room and wait for me.  I was, of course, thankful to have him with me all the other steps of the way, but I do wish he could have been there with me.The procedure went really well.  They started by locating the tumor on ultrasound once again.  Then, using the ultrasound as guidance, he numbed the portion of the breast with 7 (7!) vials of local anesthetic.  I was a little nervous before he started, because I just didn't know what to expect.  Well, I didn't feel a thing!  He kept warning me of pinching and burning that I was supposed to feel, but I didn't feel anything.  At this point I focused on the ultrasound monitor.  I had no interest in watching what was about to happen next.  :)  He said if everything was perfect he would only need one sample.  I could feel him pressing very hard, I was a little surprised actually, and thankful that I wasn't feeling all of what he was doing.  He was placing a straw-sized needle in the breast.  I could see him place it relatively near to the tumor, at least pointing in the general direction of it.  Next he threaded the biopsy needle tool down through the straw needle.  He pushed it into the middle of the growth and counted down from 3, then made the snip.  It makes a loud clicking noise, but I didn't feel anything.  I'm not exactly sure what it looks like, but it somehow snips out a little rice-sized sample of tissue.  He pulled it out to check out the quality and told me it was too small, he'd have to get another one.  He got everything ready and this time said, "this one might hurt.." and counted down from 3 again.  Once again I didn't feel anything, but a second or two later I felt a deep burning sensation.  He pulled it out and told me this one looked much better, but he would like one more sample to have a great overall cross-section of the tumor.  One from the edge and two from the middle.  He went in for the last one and I tensed up a little bit, but I didn't feel the last one either.  Finally, he prepared the titanium marker clip to inject into the tumor.  He told me that I wouldn't hear the loud click this time but I might feel a pinch.  He counted down one last time and I did feel that one a little bit, but it wasn't bad, like he said just a pinch. Then he told me to take a deep breath as he pulled out the straw-needle, but I didn't feel that either.  I'm very thankful for anesthesia today.  :)  He left the room as the nurse cleaned me up and dressed the wound.  I didn't get a good look at it before it got all covered, so I'll be interested to see how big it is when it all comes off.  I don't have any stitches but I have three steri-strips closing it up.  I'm wearing gauze and a bandage over it for the next 24 hours, and then after that I just keep the strips on until they wear off.  Finally, they topped it off with an ice pad to wear on and off for the rest of the day.They let me rest for a few minutes in the room before they took me over to do another mammogram.  I was thankful to still be numb; I don't think it would have been a very pleasant experience if I had been feeling everything!I waited a few more minutes while the doctor looked over the mammograms.  Then he called me into his office to show me the before and after film.  He showed me the initial area of concern that he identified last week.  After he showed me, it WAS pretty obvious what he saw.  Then he showed me what the titanium clip looks like inserted in there on the mammogram.  This will let anyone in the future looking at my mammograms know that this particular tumor has already b[...]

Sonograms, Mammograms, Biopsies, Oh My!


The last couple weeks have been such a whirlwind I don't even know where to begin. I suppose I'll go with chronological order.First up was an ovarian ultrasound with my OBGYN.  It was determined that my left ovary has a large cyst.  Rather, ovary IS a large cyst right now. My doctor is concerned but not worried. He wants to look at it again in 6 weeks to see what it's doing. Thankfully my CA-125 levels came back normal.  However, I do know that this cyst has been around at least 5-6 weeks because I remember feeling some pain in that area a month or so ago.  I don't quite know the connection between a cyst and ovarian cancer (didn't ask) but it's apparently cause for concern.  When they re-check in a few weeks, they will want it to have shrunk in size.  What happens next if it hasn't, I don't know.I think "they" recommend most BRCA+ women have an oophorectomy between 35-40. My doctor encouraged me to "finish my family and then get them removed quickly." Sigh. So once again we are feeling the pressure to hurry up and make a decision, though honestly lately I'm feeling done.. Ever since I got my test results for some reason. I still just want to sit on it a while and make sure it's not a knee-jerk reaction.Next up was my mammogram last Wednesday.  It wasn't bad at all.  My left side hurt a little bit, but not my right.  I'd describe it more as discomfort than pain.  The technician told me that I'd receive a call the next day if there was an issue, otherwise that meant that the mammogram was clear and I could move on.  Wouldn't you know, I got a call Thursday letting me know that they'd like me in for additional screening.  They wanted me in on Friday, but we had already left town to go to Oklahoma for the weekend so we scheduled for Monday.That brings us to today.  I (thankfully) wasn't nervous all weekend, but as soon as I got in the waiting room my heart started racing.  I got really nervous waiting to be called back.  It was finally my turn and as I changed, I was so flustered that I locked my keys in my locker!  Haha. The ultrasound tech got started, and I could tell that things got serious pretty quickly.  I was watching the monitor and could see the growth come into view.  She started asking me about my breast cancer family history, my sister's BRCA status, my BRCA status, and the age my mom was when she got cancer.  I saw her start to draw measuring lines and circles around it on the screen.  She stopped pretty quickly and told me that she wanted the doctor to come take a look.  I knew that it wasn't a good sign - normally they'd just take pictures and have a doctor review them later.  So the doctor came in and started looking at it.  He told me he is hoping that it's a fibroadenoma (a benign fibrous cyst/tumor).  The sides of the growth are smooth which is characteristic of a fibroadenoma, but she shape of it is irregular, which is the cause of his concern.  He ordered a biopsy for me, and wanted it done as soon as possible.  I'm going in at 1:00 pm tomorrow.They are going to do a needle biopsy and take 3-5 samples from the growth.  Then, they are going to inject a metal marker into the growth and do an in-depth diagnostic mammogram.  The results from the biopsy will take 3 days to come in.  (I am going to be a WRECK on Friday!)At the same time my appointment was done, I saw another girl about my age come out with the same paperwork as me.  There were tears streaming down her face.  It does feel weird when you're there, being about 20 years younger than all the other women there.  I wish I had talked to her, but she had a friend with her and I didn't want to intrude.Up to this point I still have felt an amazing amount of peace.  With this latest round of events though, it is definitely starting to erode.  It's all getting a little bit too real.  I'm still pretty devoid of e[...]

BRCA Positive


It is at this point that my blog will likely veer off in a different direction.  I will still post about my girls (who are doing great, by the way!), but I think I need to use my blog to write about the next journey in my life: Staring down cancer.

No, I don't have cancer, but on Thursday, July 5, I got that dreaded phone call that I am, in fact, BRCA2 positive for the breast cancer gene mutation.  I can't say it was that big of a surprise due to a strong family history of breast cancer, but that doesn't really make it any easier.

I'm doing surprisingly well and haven't been all that emotional about it.  I actually sort of feel numb to it right now.  My mind has been going non-stop since I found out on Thursday and I feel like I need an outlet to process everything I'm going through and learning.  I process things by writing, and I'm hoping I can let my mind rest if I just get it out here.

So here's what I know.  I have an 84% chance of developing breast cancer, and up to 44% chance of developing ovarian cancer.  7% chance of developing pancreatic cancer, but I'm not even going to think about that one.

Here's what I don't know.  Everything else.  :)  I'll be scheduling a mammogram, ovarian ultrasound, and CA 125 test tomorrow, and then I'll have to alternate a breast MRI and mammogram every six months as well as the ovarian ultrasound and CA125 test annually for monitoring until I have surgery.  I will be having a preventive mastectomy sometime in the next 5 years, possibly as soon as next year.  I will have my ovaries removed as well at some point, though timing of that one is a little more open-ended.

Overall I am thankful.  I am thankful to be living in a time with medical advances to be armed with this sort of information.  I am thankful to be in the position to take my health into my own hands and not let cancer call the shots.  I feel a great peace about it that I can't explain.  The only explanation is God's grace. I had one of "those" moments in church this morning, when I could feel God speaking to me through our praise and worship songs.  It seemed every song was meant for me.  The last song of the morning summed it up perfectly.

Whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say, it is well, it is well with my soul.

Reese is Walking!


It's funny - My friend Kerry was over here this morning and we were talking about when all our girls first walked, and I was wondering when Reese would do it because she's 1 month behind Kate. (I know you're not supposed to compare!) I didn't think she was all that close - we've been trying/practicing all month and she'd always just take 1 step and fall face first.

So tonight before I put her to bed we went over to her PBK Anywhere Chair, where we do all our practicing. If she sits on the very edge, it leaves her at the perfect height to stand up and try walking. And wouldn't you know it, she just rattles off 4 steps like it's nothing!! She was SO proud of herself, as I was too, of course. She loved it and just wanted more and more. She did it over and over again for the next half hour! She's getting good at it already, I can't wait to see what the next few days hold! I know when Kate started walking, it wasn't more than about a week of mixed crawling and walking before she was a full-time walker!

Merry Christmas!


Dear Family and Friends,Merry Christmas! We hope this season finds you well. 2011 was definitely a busy year for our family! January began the year as we adjusted to our new life as a family of four. Reese Elizabeth was born in December of 2010 and has brought so much joy to our lives. I think 2011 can be summed up as the year of job changes. I (Laura) was laid off from my job during maternity leave in January, a situation quite familiar to us. :) We took it in stride and were thankful for the extra time I would have to stay at home with the girls. I had several months of freedom and in July I finally got a job with Partner Engineering and Science doing environmental consulting. The job kept me busy and traveling frequently. In October it was Jeff's turn. He got an amazing new job as a Senior Compensation Analyst with Flowserve. It was an answer to prayer in that my job was no longer necessary, so as soon as he had signed his offer letter, I put in my two week notice to quit my job and become a stay-at-home mom. Long story short, they convinced me to not quit all together, and offered me a very unique situation that I am very grateful for. I basically work when I want to, and don't work when I don't want to. :) It's a great arrangement and I couldn't be happier being at home with the girls, yet still keeping my career relevant and bringing in some shopping money. (I may or may not have a slight problem with an addiction to buying clothes for Kate and Reese.)Kate is now 3 1/2 years old and is such a sweet heart. One highlight of her year is that she was featured on the November cover of "Suburban Parent" magazine here in Dallas. We are so proud of our little girl!She enjoys taking ballet and tap classes and we are so excited that she will have her first recital this coming spring! She is a wonderful big sister to her "Baby Reese" and loves to be a helper for mommy. She has also started Preschool this year and is absolutely flourishing. She loves to go to school.Reese just turned 1 year old! How is that possible? We thought Kate's first year went by quickly - that was nothing compared to Reese! It has been so fun to experience having a baby again and re-live all of the fun (and not so fun) milestones you get to witness.Reese is on the verge of walking and her vocabulary is just beginning to expand. She loves animals, especially our dog, Bailey, who she calls "Bah." She looks for Bah every morning and crawls over to her and pets her in bed. Her other favorite past-time involves pulling out anything I attempt to put in her hair. She loves her big sister and my favorite part of Kate's school day is the first glimpse Reese catches of her when school is done. She lights up, lets out a squeal of joy, and kicks her legs as hard as she can in the excitement of seeing her sissy. We are so blessed and thankful for our two little girls.We hope 2012 brings a little more stability into our lives, although we are currently trying to sell our house in order to move a little closer to Jeff's new job. We trust it will happen in God's timing, though we are admittedly a bit impatient to move on. We love receiving all of your Christmas cards and enjoy catching up with your families.Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!Love,The BlairsJeff, Laura, Kate, and Reese[...]

Sleep Training


Disclaimer - Yes, I let my kids CIO. Not looking for criticism there.

We've come to a crossroads with Reese. Something has to change. 20-30 minute naps 5 times a day is NOT going to cut it. Even the pediatrician said it's time to work on her. She should be taking 2 long naps with possibly one 3rd short nap.

So, I re-read Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child again last night. I followed it with Kate, but she took to it SO well, I'd hardly say I had to sleep train her. She was just automatic.

After 3 hours of uncontrollable screaming yesterday at the end of the day because she was overtired from a lack of good naps (with me actively trying to calm/soothe her) I know something has to be done.

She's been breaking out of her swaddle after 10 minutes and freaking out because her arms are loose, so I decided to go cold turkey on the swaddle and sleep train at the same time. Yes, she is getting plenty to eat. No, she is not hungry.

With my notes from the book and an action plan in place, her first nap today was somewhat successful - she only cried 20 minutes (swaddle free!) before she fell asleep. Though wouldn't you know, right at the 28 minute mark, she wakes up. So now the real CIO begins. The book says anything under 45 minutes is not an adequate nap (and even 45 is questionable at her age) and to let her figure things out an additional 30 to 60 minutes, depending on the length of the original nap. So we're at minute 40, and I don't see this ending anytime soon. She just has to figure out her self-soothing techniques on her own. I was making things worse before by continually giving her pacifier back, basically training her to wake up at these short intervals because I'll come back and soothe her.

Soooo! I wonder how long this will take to see results. We were so spoiled with Kate with immediate results. I'm keeping a sleep journal through this process, so at least I'll KNOW when I see results! Emotionally it doesn't really bother me, I don't feel bad for her, but it is just really draining to listen to her scream and scream and scream. I have the monitor turned down, but I sort of have to keep listening so I can take notes on if/when she's asleep and such.

So, that's where we are.



I can't believe it's April already! And that I haven't posted in nearly two months. Oops! I really don't know that anyone is reading though - even the blogs I follow have been slow. It seems no one is into blogging anymore. I feel bad though, Kate's infancy was so well recorded, and all Reese is getting is an update every two months. Such is the plight of a second child, I suppose!
She is doing really well. Still a tiny little peanut, she is so sweet, cuddly, and happy. We have started sleep training this week - she's been taking 20-30 minute naps, which just isn't going to cut it. The training is going well, she still wakes up after ~30 minutes, but for the most part I'm able to go give her pacifier back and she'll go back to sleep for another 30-45 minutes. One big difference between Kate & Reese's sleep habits is that Kate was finished with the swaddle at 12 weeks. Reese is still very much dependent on it! It's fine with me, I'm in no hurry to get rid of it, and I figure when she's ready it'll be a smooth transition.
She is SO close to rolling. Every day I think it's going to be the day, but she just quite hasn't made it yet.
Kate is almost 3! When did that happen? I've been working on planning her birthday party - we are going to do "The Little Mermaid." It is by far her favorite movie. It's a fun full circle moment for me, as one of my birthday parties as a child was "The Little Mermaid" as well. I think we'll do it down at our neighborhood pool.
The weather is gorgeous today, though the middle 80's is a bit warmer than I'd prefer for the first day of April. Such is life in Texas. I'm hoping the girls are in a cooperative mood this evening, I'm going to try to take some bluebonnet pictures!

Reese's 2 Month Appointment


She's such a tiny little peanut! 9 lb 11 oz (10th percentile), 21 3/4 inches long (Kate's birth length and 15th percentile) and her head is in the 20th percentile. Healthy and strong!

For comparison, Kate's stats were 11 lb 8 oz (60th Percentile), 23.5 inches long (90th percentile).
And her head in the 15th percentile.

The only weird thing that happened was in her first diaper of the morning yesterday, it looked to me like there was blood in her urine. I saved the diaper and brought it with me, and she said it could POSSIBLY be blood, but since it was still pink in the diaper (and not turned brown 7 hours later) that she thought it was urea (sp?) crystals. She had fluorescent orange pee diapers in her first week of life when she was super dehydrated with her jaundice, and she thinks it's that same thing going on, except it's pink this time. (She'd had 2 more diapers that day that were totally clear.) Reese has slept through the night 5 nights in a row now (YAY!) and oddly wakes up most mornings dry. She thinks it's just her body adjusting to that, and for some reason it piled up that night. She said it's pretty rare though not unheard of to happen at this age. She said we'll watch it, and if it happens a lot then we'll look into it. (This morning she was clear, so who knows!) She's drinking 28-30 ounces per day, so it's not dehydration.

Here are a couple recent pics of my little dear. Nana made her a beautiful quilt and she brought it over a few days ago!



6 Week Update


I can't believe I haven't posted in 6 weeks! Seriously, it's been one thing after another over here. The first week we had Reese home, Kate caught a stomach bug. Thankfully no one else caught it, probably because I walked around the house obsessively wiping things down with Clorox wipes. Then when Reese was about 2 weeks old, I had a gallbladder attack and ended up in the ER. They confirmed that I had gall stones, and told me to schedule surgery to have it removed. They couldn't fit me in until December 28, so in the mean time I had to go through Christmas week on a low (no) fat diet. Boo! But I survived, though the whole family (including Reese) caught a cough and cold where we lost our voices. It was so sad to hear Reese cry without a voice! I came through the surgery just fine, with a lot of help from my family. Jeff's parents took Kate up to Oklahoma for the week, and we stayed with my parents the week of the surgery so they could all take care of Reese. I did a lot of sleeping, which felt great to a new mom. :)I never posted about Reese's 2 week appointment, so here are those stats: She weighed 7 pounds, 1.5 oz (10th percentile), was 20 inches long (25th percentile) and her head was 25th percentile as well. So very different from Kate! :)Reese turned 6 weeks old yesterday and is doing so well. Her personality is so very similar to Kate's. She's very relaxed and "go with the flow" and and is such a little sweet heart. Up until last night, I had her sleeping in her Rock n Play in our room at night. That is so funny to me because Kate slept in her crib from Day 1. Maybe it's because she's (probably) our last baby, I'm having a harder time letting go? Anyway, her move to the crib was delayed a bit because of her cough she's had for 3 weeks, and the pediatrician wanted her to be sleeping with her head elevated, so the Rock n Play was the best place for her. She has finally 99% recovered, so we tried the crib last night with great success! When we first had Reese home from the hospital, she hated swaddling, so we abandoned it. We tried it again last night and she took right to it!Starting around 5 weeks, Reese is giving us one good 8 hour stretch at night, followed up by about a 5 hour stretch. That is so great! The only "problem" is that her long stretch starts at about 8-9 pm, so I'm still having to get up around 3-4 am to feed her. It's not bad though, she generally falls right back asleep after she eats, so I can get back to bed. I also got her first smile at 5 weeks 3 days, so that is always a wonderful moment.Kate is adjusting really well overall. She LOVES Reese to death, and is so excited to see her every day. She's been a bit more emotional lately, but she's going through such a big adjustment, it's got to affect her somehow! She is so fun at 2.5 years old and blows me away with how grown up she is.And we keep rolling with the punches - any of you who have known me since Kate was born will see the irony in this - I lost my job yesterday, laid off again. What is it with me and having babies?? So frustrating. It really was the perfect job for a mom. I'm not looking forward to going through the job search again, and working a traditional "8-5" job. Not ideal to say the least. I'm really disappointed and frustrated, but am trying to look on the bright side of things and remind myself that I'm just getting extra time with Reese, and to give thanks to God through all circumstances. He will provide for us.[...]

Reese Elizabeth's Birth Story


Reese Elizabeth BlairDecember 2, 20107 Pounds, 19 Inches Long----------------------I was originally due December 15, but all along had sort of hoped I could have the baby in the 38-39 week timeframe. Kate's delivery at 39 1/2 weeks was very rough and came very close to ending in a c-section. I figured since I made it that far with Kate's pregnancy, I'd no doubt make it to my induction scheduled for December 13. I also wanted to see what it was like to go into labor - to have the excitement of wondering if this is really it, alerting friends and family, and all that fun stuff.I'd had very frequent Braxton Hicks contractions all along in this pregnancy, but I did notice them starting to ramp up in late November. I really had my heart set on a December baby, but also thought there's no way I'd go THAT early to go before 38 weeks in November! Nonetheless, once we hit December 1 (and 38 weeks), I decided to start trying some of the natural induction methods to see if I could coax the baby out before the induction date. I've always heard they won't work unless your body is ready to go into labor anyway, but I thought it couldn't hurt to start trying to get my body ready!I'd had several friends tell me they'd both heard and used successfully the Wii Hula Hoop to get themselves to go into labor! So the last night of November, I did about 10 minutes. It sure sent me into an immediate contraction! Once I stopped, however, it stopped as well. My regular Braxton Hicks contractions continued the rest of the night and overnight.Wednesday, December 1stOn December 1st I worked my normal work day, and around 4 pm I noticed my contractions were intensifying a little bit. I didn't time them, but I guessed they were about 6-7 minutes apart. Jeff came home about 7, and I told him that I'm not saying this is "it" but he'd better work on his hospital bag. The contractions were getting stronger but not painful. Shortly after that I went for a walk with my friend Kathy while Jeff gave Kate a bath. I had a few painful contractions where I had to stop and wait them out during the walk. I made sure to get home in time to put Kate down with Jeff, just in case it would be our last night as a family of 3. (It's a good thing I did!)I sat down to finish my work for the day, and the contractions continued but didn't get any stronger. At this point I called my parents and sister once again not to say this is "it" but just FYI, and stay tuned. After I finished my work, I did several more rounds of Wii hula hooping before going to bed. The wii told me i was obese, thanks a lot! At 11:00 pm they were 4 minutes apart and felt crampy. I fell asleep alright but was up in the middle of the night for several hours, wide awake. The contractions were there, but not keeping me up.Thursday, December 2When I got up in the morning, the contractions picked up again but they were not as strong or as frequent as the night before. I did another 10 minutes of Wii hula hoop to see if it would increase the intensity of my contractions. I threw my hospital bags in the car, knowing it was completely wishful thinking, but I wanted to have them just in case. I headed out door for work, and couldn't decide whether to call the doctor because the contractions weren't as strong anymore. (At my appointment on Tuesday he had told me to call if I had regular contractions for 1 hour. At this point we were about 13 hours past that! I just didn't feel like I was in labor - I wasn't really in any pain to speak of.) At 7:30 or 8 am I talked to my mom, who encouraged me to call and tell him what's going on. On the 45 minute drive to my first work site, I timed my contractions at 5 minutes apart and decided I should call Dr Rovner at 9:50. I left a message on the nurses line, and they called less than 5 minutes later telling[...]

Reese Elizabeth Blair


I am so proud to announce the birth of our daughter, Reese Elizabeth Blair!

She was born on Thursday, December 2, 2010 at 7:52 pm. She weighed 7 pounds and was 19 inches long. We are all doing great and couldn't be happier to have another sweet daughter.


I will work on writing down her birth story and getting it posted!

38 Weeks!


I know it's been a while since I posted, sorry! Everything is going well - I'm just SO ready to have this baby! I had a checkup today, and I'm now 2 cm dilated and 30% effaced. My doctor gave me a 50/50 shot of going into labor on my own before my induction. I'm keeping my fingers crossed! That would be GREAT. Now that it's (essentially) December, I'm trying every trick in the book to jumpstart labor! Tonight I ate some pineapple and did the Wii Hula Hoop for about half an hour. Let me tell you - that thing is crazy! You basically have one long contraction the whole time you're hooping! I think that's going to end up being a key weapon in my arsenal. :) Either way, it won't be long, only 13 days to go!

33 Week Appointment & Ultrasound


Everything is great!!

The baby looks great, is measuring in the 32nd percentile (!! small!!) at 4.5 pounds. Estimating 7.5-8 pounds at birth. Man, would I take that! I've heard this before though, they were estimating about that same thing before Kate was born. Heart rate was 126 bpm. SO low! I can't get over it! Kate's was ALWAYS in the 170's. The best news is that my fluid levels looked great, so yay!

The baby is adorable, and definitely has his/her big sister's chubby cheeks. (image)

They also noted that this baby has a ton of thick hair! YAY!

The only "iffy" thing about the appointment was that my blood pressure was a little higher than it has been the whole pregnancy, so he said that the weekly visits usually start in 2 weeks, but he's going to start them now just to keep an eye on it. So, I can't believe it! 6 weeks to go!

It's Time to Vote!


Sorry I haven't posted in a while! Fall is always a busy time, and this time around it's even busier getting ready for a new baby! I will be 33 weeks tomorrow, and we even have an induction scheduled for December 13! I created another ExpectNet guessing game, so you can guess the gender and arrival time of the baby! See the link to your left. I'll also post here. Can't wait to see everyone's guesses!


Potty Training Days 3 & 4


Well, we did it!!! The potty training "course" I used was a 3-day course, so we finished up yesterday! Here's a recap of Day 3:

7:15 am - Woke up ALMOST dry! Had a BIG pee on the potty as soon as she got up! Put on first panties of the day.
~10:30 am - Picked her up from her class at church. Her panties were slightly damp. Her teachers said she they had taken her to the potty a couple times, but she wasn't able to go.
11:15 am - Big pee on potty!
12:05 pm - Big pee on potty!
3:30 pm - Woke up from her nap DRY! Wouldn't pee on toilet.
3:37 pm - Big pee on potty!
7:02 pm - Big pee on potty!

So, we only went through 2 pairs of panties! And I don't really count the incident at church as an accident - it was only a couple drops in her panties, not a full blown accident. So she was ALMOST accident-free for Day 3. I'd say we made probably 10-15 false alarm potty trips. So amazing. I can't believe we did it!

Day 4:

We used today as a day to try to segway back into the real world. She goes back to daycare tomorrow, so I wanted today to feel like every day for the rest of her life will be! Instead of having her run around in a shirt and panties, we put bottoms back on today. In addition, we went to visit Kate's friend Jaelyn who is also potty training! It was so much fun to have them together, alternating trips to the potty. :) I didn't take any notes on the day, mainly because I didn't need to! Kate is a rock star. She has this down pat, and has been accident free again today! Not even an "incident!" Clean panties all day long. She tells me when she needs to go, and we go!

I am SO proud of my big girl, and I can't believe we did it! She is potty trained!

In baby news, today I have 100 days left! Yikes!! Time is flying!

Potty Training Day 2


Ahhh, bedtime. This is so much work constantly being on top of your toddler all day! You just breathe a sigh of relief at bedtime. The baby doesn't like me being so busy - I've had a lot of BH contractions the last 2 days!We made progress today! A couple accidents, but a couple other huge successes as well. Here was our day.7:30 am - Woke up with a wet pull-up. Wouldn't pee on potty, then we put on first panties of the day.10:00 am - Accident on master bedroom floor. Wouldn't pee on potty afterwards.10:15 am - Big pee on potty!10:38 am - Big pee on potty!11:06 am - Pee on potty!11:46 am - Big pee on potty!1:00 pm - Naptime. Put her down in a pullup.3:15 pm - Woke up from nap a little wet, and poop in pullup.4:18 pm - Pee in Potty!4:57 pm - Small POOP in the potty!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (First poop in potty!!!!!)5:53 pm - Small drop of pee in panties, wouldn't pee on toilet.7:01 pm - Drop of pee in panties, BIG pee in potty!7:20 pm - Poop and small pee in panties. Yuck. Changed her into pullup for the night.7:52 pm - BedtimeSo, I would consider today to have had 2 accidents - this morning, and then the poop in her panties this evening. I was REALLY optimistic until we ended on a low, that accident. I know I shouldn't be down about it because it's only Day 2, and this is really to be expected. I am still just THRILLED that she pooped in the potty at all!! What a big girl! She certainly didn't like it, but she did it. I consider that second accident my fault. With this potty training method, you are supposed to be with them at ALL times. By their side at every waking moment. I was so tired this evening that I was sitting on the couch when I realized I hadn't "heard" from her in about 2 minutes. Well, that was long enough for her to sneak off and poop in her panties. If I had been there, I could have caught it and re-directed her to the potty. So, my fault. I guess that's why I'm down about it too, it probably could have been prevented. Lesson learned! But we only went through 4 pairs of panties today, compared to yesterday's what, 9? That is already huge progress! And we had 2 accidents compared to 7 successful potty attempts, so that is great. AND, I feel like we probably made only about 15-20 "false alarm" potty attempts compared to yesterday's ~30. Things are clicking. She's getting it!I'm a little nervous about going to church tomorrow. For now the plan is to take her in a pair of panties, bring a couple changes of clothes, and hope for the best! Just last week her "class" graduated up a room, so they should be used to working with potty training kids in there. I have a pullup packed for her if all else fails.One other interesting side effect of this potty training business is that it has made Kate VERY emotional. I'm sure it's just because there are so many changes happening, and I'm sure this is stressful for her to go through, but wow. Mostly she is very very needy of my affection, love, and touch. She is REALLY not that kind of girl - sure she loves to give occasional hugs and kisses, but she is in almost constant need of my affection. It's actually pretty sweet. In between trips to the potty she just wants me to hold her. However, on the other end of the emotions, if things don't go JUST right or a toy doesn't open the right way or if I tell her "no" about anything, she loses it in an ABSOLUTE tantrum. So this is an interesting change to observe in my usually calm, cool, and collected girl.Here is bonus picture of Kate from today. First day of Sooner Football!! :)[...]

Potty Training Day 1


I've never felt in a huge rush to get Kate potty trained or anything, but I've had lots of people tell me they thought she was ready lately. That combined with the fact that I was going to be home all weekend with no plans (Friday through Monday) I figured what better time to at least give it a try?? So, we buckled down and gave it our best shot.

This is going to be boring, but I know I'm going to want this recorded somewhere, so here it is.

~9:30 am - First Panties
10:20 am - Accident - pee on my dress shoes and nursery floor
10:35 am - Partial accident in booster seat, coloring. Finished by TINY pee in toilet!!!! (Her first time ever!!)
10:40 am - Tiny dot of pee on her panties, she told me she had to go. A FULL pee in the potty!!
10:45 am - Tiny dot of pee on panties, she caught herself, and had a tiny pee in toilet.
12:00 - 12:15 pm - A cluster of 3 huge accidents on the floor! I got so discouraged. 1 successful small pee in the potty in between accidents.
12:21 pm - Small pee in potty
12:35 pm - BIG pee in potty!!
1:00 pm - Nap Time
3:20 pm - Woke up from nap DRY!
3:25 pm - BIG pee in potty!! No accident or even drops in panties!
5:32 pm - Small drop of pee in panties, wouldn't pee on potty.
6:50 pm - BIG pee on potty!!
7:40 pm - Put her to bed
7:50 pm - Called for me that she wanted to go pee. Set her on the toilet, and she went!! After that, straight back to bed with no fuss.

So she had no accidents from naptime on!! (I don't really count drops in the panties as an accident as long as she is catching herself and stopping it!) We went through 9 pairs of panties today. And in between all of these events, we made at LEAST 30 "false alarm" trips. We're going with the route where I'm having her tell me when she has to go, so everytime she says, we go. (Like every time she had to toot, etc.) So it seems she is still (obviously) trying to figure out all the signals her body is giving her, and what feeling means what!

So I have no idea what true success is, but I think this is pretty good for Day 1! We're definitely going to keep it up tomorrow! She is SO proud every time she goes, it's so cute.

23 Week Update


Now that I'm halfway to 24... But oh well, I'm home now from a trip to Minnesota so I have time to post!

My appointment was good, pretty low-key and quick! First of all, I gained 7 pounds in the last 4 weeks! :faints: Looks like I'm making up for the 15 I lost. Oh well! I asked my doctor if he could tell what position the baby was in by feeling my belly and he said that in general he can, and he'd check. Not that it'd make a difference - it can and will change 10 seconds after he does it. (which I knew!) But I was just curious (and I admit, partially worried) that the baby was breech and facing inside because seriously ALL of my "kicks" were very low and to the inside. I couldn't feel hardly anything with my hand on the outside of my belly, and all my interior organs were getting beat up constantly!

He palpated around, and said that he couldn't even feel the baby without really digging in and hurting me, it was buried so deep inside! So he didn't even want to speculate on position.

They also sent me off to my 1 hr glucose test. I was a little worried about that this time, because of the sugar "scare" we'd had at my last appointment.

Well, I got a call (while shopping at the Mall of America hehe ) on Friday that I had passed! Woohoo!

Also, I think the baby has flipped or flopped or something! All those low, interior bumps and kicks are about 90% gone, and I am feeling a TON through my belly up by my ribs now! Almost constant! So much fun. :) All my friends got to feel the baby over the weekend, so that was fun.

My only complaint is the reflux. With Kate, I only had it occasionally, and especially after certain foods. This time, it's constant all day every day. Thank God for Zantac and Gaviscon!

I think that's about it - can't believe I'll be 24 weeks in a few days!



Apparently 20 weeks is the magic mark for me in pregnancy - when I get sick. Over the last weekend I could tell I was either coming down with something, or trying to fight something off. By Sunday morning at church I could tell I had lost. I went to the doctor on Monday and sure enough I had an upper respiratory infection and bronchitis. They put me on a Z-pack and gave me some cough syrup for the overnights. It's been somewhat slow - I'm exhausted and still coughing a lot, but overall feeling better. Braxton Hicks contractions have also kicked in. When I get on a big coughing fit, they'll start up for a little bit. My whole abdomen is so sore from coughing so much!

Last week, I took Kate to the doctor because one of her eyes looked infected. Unfortunately, she has incredibly waxy ears with wax that is nearly impossible to remove when dry. They had to irrigate her ears to even get a look in them. :( It was way worse than when they tried to draw blood. This was the most panicked I'd ever seen her. It took 3 of us to hold her down. So sad. So anyway, it turned out taht she had her FIRST ear infection, and the eye infection was secondary to the ear issues.

So the blessing in disguise of that situation was that she's been on antibiotics this whole time I've been sick, so thankfully she has been protected from the bronchitis! I'm very thankful for that!

The baby is doing great. I am feeling more and more kicks every day. It is so special and I'm definitely stopping to make sure I enjoy every minute of it.

The Heart Problems Return!


This morning during church, I had another one of my heart/breathing "episodes" that I had so often when I was pregnant with Kate. I had to go to a cardiologist (back then), have an EKG, sonogram of my heart, and wear a heart monitor for 24 hours (and a nice $2K medical bill) all to tell me my heart was working normally.

But it's still so annoying/scary! My heart starts RACING and I feel like I can't catch my breath. Each episode lasts 5-10 minutes. From what I could tell with my journal from Kate, it started at around 25 weeks. So I got a little earlier start this time!

I will say this is one thing I was REALLY hoping would stay away this time. Really not pleasant.

19 Week Appointment


For once I had a routine appointment! It was about time for one of those.

My weight is up 3 pounds since last month (finally!), so that makes me -12 for the pregnancy now.

When they tested me for sugar & protein, I was pegged at the worst color on the sugar test. So they ran a quick bloodsugar test on me. While we were waiting for the nurse with the bloodsugar kit to come in, my doctor asked me what I ate for breakfast. I sheepishly answered, "Crunch Berries." He said, "Really... Seriously? That's what my kids would eat!" I told him, "Hey, at least I'm eating!!" He said, "that's true!" (All this in a good-natured, joking tone of course!) He likes to tease me. So my bloodsugar came back 136. They said that was high but fine, as long as it was under 150. They just told me not to eat a breakfast like that before one of my appointments, especially next month before my glucose screen.

I asked him how likely I was to have Polyhydramnios again with this pregnancy. He said I have a 5-10% higher chance of getting it again. He said starting around 28 weeks they'll be watching me for signs. Basically he said I'll just get more ultrasounds than the normal patient.

Other than that, all is well! They handed me my bottle of orange Glucola to bring and drink for my next appointment and glucose test in a month! Can't believe I'm about halfway done...

I'm feeling quite a few of the baby's kicks now. I can't remember if I documented this "back then" but I started feeling them around 13.5 weeks. It's finally getting to be consistent enough that I'm feeling baby multiple times daily. Definitely the best part of pregnancy, I love it!

I've been busy over here working on Kate's Big Girl Room. We are going to move her in September, so in the mean time I've been planning and accessorizing. The biggest project is going to be painting my childhood dressers white. Not really looking forward to that! But I can't wait until the room is finished, it's going to be great! The pink, girly nursery I never got to do. :)

15 Week Appointment and Ultrasound


I had a routine appointment (or so I thought) this morning. Started off with my weight - I've lost another 1.5 pounds, making it somewhere close to 14 for the pregnancy. (According to my scale at home, I've stayed the same!) They "scolded" me and told me it was going in the wrong direction, but all in a playful tone. They just want me to make sure I'm eating when I can. I feel like I've been REALLY bad in the food department the last couple weeks, so I can't believe I was still losing. I'm going to try to keep it in check though, so I don't have a 10 lb weight gain next time! Lord knows I had enough extra going into this pregnancy that there's room for some loss there!I told my doctor that I've been VERY sore this time around, much more so than with Kate. My uterus is very tender especially when I twist wrong, when Bailey walks across me, or if Kate bumps into me or somthing. I've even been borderline crampy for about a week. Dr was a little concerned about that, so he did a pelvic exam and said everything looked/felt normal, but he wanted to get me in for an ultrasound just to make sure everything was looking good.So off I went! The baby is SOOO cute!! Last time it was still pretty much a blob but this time, there was my fully-formed little baby, squirming, punching, kicking, and everything. So magical. She spent lots of time looking at everything. Cervix was long and closed, great! Baby is perfectly healthy and measuring just as it should. Heart, bladder, brain all look good. At the end, she said.. "So, are you finding out the gender?" My heart stopped... THIS was my chance!! But I broke down and said, "No... I want to know, but my husband doesn't." She said, "Then I'm not telling you a thing." I said, "So, you mean you can actually tell right now at 15 weeks??" She said, "I have a pretty darn good guess!" So I joked "Well if it's only a guess, then you can tell me because it's only a guess!" She said, "I'm pretty good at what I do." And left it at that. Hmph. Deep down I really do want another surprise, but for some reason this time around it's just so hard to follow through!It makes me suspect girl though because I was looking. And I mean LOOKING. She never told me to look away, so she snuck a peek at the goods sometime during that whole process and I sure had my eyes peeled. I really feel like I could pick out boy parts if I had to! I suppose you never know how sneaky those u/s techs can be though! Probably just wishful thinking though.So, I survived not finding out. They said they're not sure if they'll do a 20 week u/s because they just got all the growth & measurments they need out of this one, but "we'll see." My dr tends to hand out ultrasounds pretty readily if you want them, so I have a feeling I'll be back for more! I also want them to keep an eye on fluid level since I had polyhydramnios last time, so I'll remind them of that at my next appt.Without further ado, here's weatherbaby 2! Oh yeah - heart rate 137. WAY lower than last time!I love this one - how the baby is just reclined with it's legs propped up.Otherwise I'm doing pretty well, other than some headaches. I did this in the second trimester with Kate too, so I suppose I should have suspected it! They are so annoying! Tylenol and/or Coke usually helps, but it's still annoying to have to take Tylenol, I'd rather not expose the baby to any medication, even though it's safe. I also wanted to make note of my cravings this time around. First and fore[...]

Recap Up to This Point


I've heard that famously first pregnancies get all the glory and attention, and then no one cares every pregnancy after that. Haha! But a sweet friend asked me if I was going to blog about this time around, so I'll do it! So that way, this baby will have a good record about his/her pregnancy as well.I found out I was pregnant on Saturday, April 3, 2010. We were in Chicago visiting my sister and her family. I knew that we'd be visiting them during the time I'd be able to find out, so I packed a few pregnancy tests. It was THE faintest line in the world... I seriously didn't know if it was there or not, but deep down I knew it was. It was even fainter than Kate's first test line!I kept it to myself for the day, but told Jeff that I THINK I may have gotten a positive. We decided to try again the next morning with a digital test because there would be no mistaking that! So Easter Sunday morning, we got up and tested. We brought Kate into the room and waited while the hourglass on the test blinked FOREVER, then finally said, "PREGNANT" YAY!!!!We told Kate she was going to be a big sister! She, of course, had no opinion other than reacting to our excitement, being 23 months old. :)We sent Kate upstairs to breakfast wearing her "Big Sister" shirt. (Yes, that I had packed in advance, "just in case.") (I had a feeling about this month!)Andrea and Steve totally didn't see it at first, and we had to specifically point it out to get them to notice. :) They were shocked and excited!I had been on Metformin again for about a month, getting my body ready to try to get pregnant again. We were thinking it may take a few months to get my body fully cooperating again. The first month was a dud with no ovulation, but I had a clear ovulation the second month! We weren't expecting it to happen so quickly, but are absolutely thrilled that it did, since we had to try so long to get Kate.The first few weeks of pregnancy, let's see, where to begin... As soon as we were home from Chicago, my doctor brought me in for some blood tests. My levels came back pretty low, but still a positive result. We tested every 48 for about the next week or so. My levels were doubling appropriately, but then I got a call that my progesterone levels were dangerously low, and falling. (As in, not high enough to sustain a pregnancy.) They called in a prescription for me, and told me to go wait AT the pharmacy for it to be ready, and take my first dose as soon as it was ready! Through the following week or so, (I think we're at week 5 or 6 at this point?) they continued to test my progesterone levels, getting bad results each time. They doubled my dosage, and the following week they finally started to rise. Not to wonderful levels, but acceptable. They want your progesterone to be a MINIMUM of 15 during pregnancy, and at my lowest I was at 3.9. I leveled off at 14.9, though my most recent level taken was 12.1.They scheduled an ultrasound for 6 weeks, to take a look and see how things were going in there. I knew that at Kate's 6w4d ultrasound, we had seen not only her, but her heartbeat. I didn't expect to see a heartbeat (though it was possible) but I certainly expected to see the baby, aka the fetal pole as it is termed at this stage. We saw hardly anything. We could see the gestational sac as well as the yolk sac, but no fetal pole, and certainly no heartbeat.I was scared to death. They told me that it was not great but ok - I could just not be as far [...]

Kate is Going to be a Big Sister!


The big news in our family is that we are expecting another baby!! I am due December 15th, the day after my birthday! It has been a rocky pregnancy, to say the least, but all is well now, and the baby appears to be healthy and thriving! We are very excited to see who this precious little person is going to be. Here is the latest ultrasound a little over a week ago at 9 weeks, 2 days.