Thanksgiving and other goings on

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Cadence's Thanksgiving program at school (she's the "K")

Thanksgiving Day tea party at Grandma and Big Jake's (Cadence is helping introduce Uncle Charlie to the world of feather boas and tiaras before his little princess arrives this Spring)

Our Thanksgiving was pretty low key this year. I had only been out of the hospital since Sunday and was still pretty sick so we didn't cook. We watched the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade with the kids and then headed over to Grandma and Big Jake's for dinner. It was our first time out of the house with all three kids.

Black Friday came and went and I didn't go shopping. It was bittersweet. I missed the craziness and was even a little jealous when Dianne said she'd been standing in line outside in the rain at Best But for an hour, but at the same time I was curled up in my warm bed with two of my favorite guys. There will be other Black Fridays.

Chris went back to work today and I totally cried like a baby (damn hormones). He has been my rock throughout this whole pregnancy and in the week and a half sice Liam's birth. Cadence and Gabriel also went back to school. The house was very quiet. Liam and I tried to make-up for lost sleep by taking a morning nap and then I washed some diapers, did a load of laundry and picked up a bit downstairs. It was a productive day.

Liam's Birth Story

Just over twenty-four hours ago, on November 20th at 7:50 p.m. William "Liam" Lucas Hall made his grand entrance into this world weighing 9lbs 6oz and at 22 inches long. I have never been more relieved in my entire life.

Around 5:30 p.m., I begun having contractions on a regular basis. They were two minutes apart, but they weren't strong. This happened a few weeks ago and they stopped so I wasn't making too big a deal of it. Close to 6:00 p.m. I felt a pop. I stood up expecting to be standing in a puddle of clear fluid like you see in the movies. There was a puddle, but it wasn't clear. It was red. Bright red. Chris and I ran out of the house in less than two minutes and headed to the hospital. We called the doctor on our way. He said not to worry and that he would be there shortly.

We got to the hospital a few minutes after 6:00 p.m. They asked me if I could walk and I said, "yes" but told them what had happened. They put me in a wheelchair and took me upstairs. I filled out a few consent forms and was still talking through my contractions. They weren't really bad at that point. They got me in a room and said I was still 3cm dilated, which was no change from my appointment on Wednesday. They hooked me up to the monitors and the first thing I heard was the baby's heartbeat. I can't begin to describe the wave of relief that hit me when I heard that familiar galloping sound. By 6:45 p.m. the contractions were starting to pick up. I couldn't talk through them anymore and it was really hard to relax. I wasn't able to sit up because of the bleeding so finding a comfortable position was almost impossible. I knew that without the freedom to move there was no way I was going to be able to go through labor without an epidural. I asked for the anesthesiologist.

My doctor arrived just as the anesthesiologist came in. I was dilated to 6cm. The contractions were back-to-back and I felt so out of control. My doctor stepped out while the anesthesiologist administered the epidural and administered a test does of the medication. The test dose had not fully taken effect when I announced, "I'm pushing." One of the nurses reminded me that I was only 6cm dilated that that I needed to breathe through my contractions. I told her that I couldn't and my body was pushing without my consent. Another nurse told me that a team was on standby in case the baby needed special care due to the blood. My doctor came in and checked me again. He asked if I was ready to have this baby. I said no. I was so worried about Liam. My body disagreed and pushed anyway. I gave in and pushed four times.

After the fourth push I felt instant relief from the pain and heard crying. They placed Liam on my tummy and tried to wipe him off as best they could. At that moment, I felt like the weight of the world had been lifted off of my shoulders. I knew that God had been watching out for Liam.

After the delivery my doctor told me that it appeared that my placenta had partially separated from my uterine wall in early labor (also known as a placental abruption).

They gave me a dose of pitocin after the delivery to help stop the bleeding. Originally, we had planned to go home immediately after Liam's birth but, due to the amount of blood loss, we had to stay overnight to have my hemoglobin monitored. Everything seemed in check this morning and we left the hospital right at noon.

It definitely wasn't the birth that Chris and I had imagined, but it is wonderful to have Liam in our lives. Chris and I were both terrified yesterday and have been running on adrenaline ever since. We've only managed to sleep for a few hours since yesterday. Hopefully we can calm down and get some sleep tonight. Liam is doing well. He has some bruising on his head from his speedy occiput posterior (aka sunny side up) delivery, but is overall doing great!

Our kids provide the best entertainment

Our kids are a never-ending source of entertainment so I thought that I would dedicate this post to some of their crazy antics.

Gabe rockin out on Daddy's guitar

Gabe: "Where's my sucker??"

Cadence killing time waiting for food at a restaurant

Gabriel testing out the baby's new car seat/swing combo

Gabe + box of cornstarch = BIG mess

Gabe + Cadence + ashes from fire pit = even BIGGER mess

Gabe paying a visit to Roxy

Every once in a while though, all of the craziness catches up to them and it's just too much for them to handle. :)

You know what they say about a watched pot...

"A watched pot never boils." That's what they say at least. It also appears that a watched baby doesn't come early like his/her big siblings.

We hit the 39 week mark today. Since, until this pregnancy, I had never made it past 38 weeks it feels like time is standing still... and that everyone is watching the pot. It's funny to call people, because they all answer, "Are you having the baby yet?" Nope. I'm beginning to wonder if there even is a baby. Hopefully Pistachio will make an appearance soon. I'm told that I won't be pregnant forever. That's good. In the meantime, please feel free to let me know if my shoes don't match. I can't see them. :)

Maternity Pictures by Anna Goad

A big THANK YOU goes out to Anna Goad who took some amazing pictures of our family in Pistachio's nursery a few weeks ago. They turned out absolutely beautifully!!! :) Thanks Anna. We love you!!!

Pistachio must be pretty comfy

Yesterday Chris and I went grocery shopping. We decided to make various wives tale labor-inducing recipes just to see if they would help coax little Pistachio out of hiding. We walked all over Walmart and then up and down the street later that afternoon. For six hours yesterday, I had contractions 3 minutes apart. I took a shower and sent a text message to the doula and Chris called the doctor in the early evening warning them that they may be getting a middle-of-the-night phone call.

I decided to lay down and rest before things really got going. When I woke up an hour later, they had STOPPED. Ugh. I had one or two random contractions within the next hour or so, but nothing regular. Needless to say I was pretty disappointed. With Cadence and Gabriel, once my contractions began they never stopped so this was my first experience with "false labor."

My doctor called this morning to check on me. I thought that was really nice of him. In my first two pregnancies I called a generic number and the person that answered called the doctor to see if I should go to the hospital. This time, I call my doctor's cell phone directly. This morning he personally called me back. It's the small things that I appreciate. ;)

I understand that Pistachio will come out when he or she is good and ready. I just hope that he or she doesn't try to tease us again. Also, I would prefer not to deliver a baby on Thanksgiving, if that isn't too much to ask. ;)

Now for an update on the Pistachio Baby Pool: It appears that Grandma Hall, Big Jake, Jenni, Dianne and John Hall (aka Uncle Extraordinaire) are all out of the running. So are Mommy and Daddy (although we didn't "officially" guess, we were betting on November 5th). The next guess is Amanda's for November 10th and then there are four people betting on November 11th. November 11th would be sort of a neat date since baby would turn 1 on 11/11/11.

Tonight does not appear to be my night...

Tonight I am 37 weeks and 6 days pregnant. During my pregnancies with both Cadence and Gabriel I went into labor on this day. They were both delivered in the early afternoon when I was 38 weeks. With this pregnancy, however, tonight does not appear to be my night. At my check-up yesterday I was dilated 1cm and was 60% effaced. Baby is still high up and floating. With Gabriel, he was "locked and loaded" at 36 weeks and I was 2cm dilated and 80% effaced. I plan on having a chat with Pistachio tonight to see if I can talk him/her into coming out soon, but I am pretty sure that this one is going to be stubborn (we're going to blame that on Daddy). ;)

I went to the Spa at West End this afternoon for a silk & honey bath, massage, pedicure and facial. When I got there I was told that I was "too pregnant" for a bath. Were they worried I was going to get stuck in the tub??? Fine. After my massage (which was GREAT) I had my facial. The lady told me she wouldn't use any steam because I was "too pregnant." Really...? She did however put the steaming hot towels on my face. I'm not exactly sure what the difference is but apparently there is one. ;) Then I got a pedicure on my toes (TOES!). :) I was finished just in time to leave to go get the kids from daycare.

Tomorrow is supposed to be my day off to get ready for the baby; however, I may end up going into the office anyway to finish up a few things. Then tomorrow night Chris and I are going to a Road Warriors game (yay!). That is our only plan for the weekend. I'll probably do lots of walking and negotiating with this baby to see if I can get him or her to pay us a visit sometime before Thanksgiving.

I found this picture this evening and just had to share: