Friday, December 28, 2012


We had a nice, low key Christmas this year. All the big kids were finally not sick but Alice had a really hard Christmas Eve day and night. Poor girl wouldn't let us put her down and she didn't finally sleep for awhile til 2am. Gave us just enough time to wrap gifts and hurry ourselves to bed. We got a couple hours of sleep before Alice woke up at 5am and went back to sleep just a few minutes before the big girls woke up to open presents. Christmas adrenaline kept Jason and I going for a long time luckily haha

Alice did let us do our traditional Minivan Express which I was so grateful for as it's one of my favorite traditions. The girls open their new pjs, we get blankets, hot chocolate, and popcorn, the girls get their tickets and as they load up into the van, Jason punches their tickets. We drive all over town looking at Christmas lights and listening to Christmas music til the girls fall asleep.

Christmas morning was so fun, I think it's the first year that Audrey and Charlotte really understood what was happening and that was exciting to watch! Paula and her family came over for the amazing dinner Jason had made

It was a really nice day with the family :)

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Just a quick update

Alice will be 10 weeks old already tomorrow! Time seems to fly by faster and faster with each child. She's been such a blessing to our family! Such a mellow, laid back little baby, very different from all of her sisters! Probably a good thing to be mellow in a house this crazy hahaha She's already sleeping anywhere from 5-8 hours at night, something I was completely not expecting and keep waiting for her to stop! I'm extremely grateful for the sleep though, I have so many other people to take care of, I think I would have lost my mind if I had to be up and down all night like with the others. We've all been fighting sickness over the last month and unfortunately Alice caught some of it. So far, nothing serious, just a bought of tummy grumbles and currently sinus junk. We're all praying and disinfecting like crazy and hopefully we can finally be sick free soon!

We had a pretty rough 9 day span last week. It all started at the end of November when we had to put one of our dogs down because he became so ill. Shorty had been a very overweight dog for a long time, no matter what we tried. He started not eating and losing weight and then the end of November, he became so ill he couldn't keep down water. We took him to the urgent care vet and they found out he had diabetes, pancreatitis, and Cushings. He was extremely sick. We unfortunately don't have the kind of free income that long term care for all of that would cost. Jason is a diabetic and so we know how much insulin is without insurance. He was 10 years old and had lived a good life, it broke our hearts but we couldn't let him suffer so we had to put him down. The girls did pretty good with it, we really focused on how happy he is in doggy heaven. Naty took it the hardest and we spent some time snuggling and crying together. She's only 5 but she has enough compassion to think through her own sadness and said "I bet Uncle Dan is very sad" (Shorty was technically my brother's dog) and I just thought that was so sweet and wonderful that she could look outside herself and think of him that way. Shorty was a wonderful dog, he was always so protective of our girls. Any time they went out back to play, no matter how hot or cold it was, Shorty always had to be out there with them, watching. He got into food and trash all the time and frustrated us but at the end of the day, he always came and snuggled with you on the couch. We'll miss him.

So that was Thursday, on Sunday, my mom was out training for her marathon and she fell and broke her arm. Thank the Lord it was her left one. She really did a number on it though, she severely dislocated her wrist, broke a bone in her hand, and broke a bone in her forearm. Her dislocated wrist is so bad that she's having surgery tomorrow to put a plate in so it will stay. This was bad enough on it's own, but Monday Naty had her tonsils out and my mom was supposed to get the other 3 to school and keep Alice for us. My dad took off work to help out. He got the girls to school and we took Alice to the hospital with us. Naty's surgery went very smooth, no complications and we were home after about an hour. She's been doing amazing with her recovery! Only need pain meds for about 4 days and is actually going back to school tomorrow! She misses eating normal food is the only struggle we're having. She has to have soft food for another week. I've been doing my best to cook dinners that she can have to so she doesn't feel so left out every meal.

Through all of that, we got a tummy bug go through the house, only Naty and Lotty were spared. We've had some sinus/bronchial junk that we've been passing around and around. I've turned into a germaphob and got nuts with Lysol and Clorox wipes at the end of every day. I *think* we're coming to the end of all of it? It would be nice to not be sick for Christmas but I guess we'll see.

I've been taking pics of the kids like a mad woman so I'll share some of the highlights.

Naty and "her husband" Luke at the school carnival

Alice's favorite place to sleep

My mob <3 (a group of Kangroos is a mob, I found it fitting haha)

Audrey decorating the tree

Alice started smiling, it's the best!

Our elf, Pixie Stix

The girls' letters to Santa

Alice's disapproving face haha

Our sweet Shorty

Naty before her surgery

After her surgery, that's a pillow they gave her hahaha

Naty's class made her a Get Well Soon book full of pictures from them

She gave a great smile after one of our rough days

The girls have been stealing my pjs lately haha

Alice's newborn pictures

A very, sweet, talented friend of mine gave us a photo session with her as a baby shower gift! She did some amazing portraits of Alice!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Alice Catherine :)

First sister picture <3
We welcomed Alice Catherine to our family on October 1st at 7:38am! I know, I'm just a little behind posting haha Adjusting to juggling 5 kids has been a process.

I actually made it to my scheduled c-section date! I couldn't believe it, that was the longest I've ever been pregnant (39 weeks)! It was so weird to walk into Labor & Delivery and not be in labor haha Felt a little like going to the salon, oh I'm just here to have a baby! Haha We checked in at 5:30am (which was ok since I hardly slept anyway), were done with all my admission stuff by 6am so we had over an hour to twiddle our thumbs. About 6:30am the nurse came in and asked if they ever mentioned a heart murmur for Alice. No one ever had, pretty sure my own heart rate doubled at that point. The nurse explained there's a common murmur that goes away after delivery and not to worry. Hahaha yeah right lady!! I spent the next 45mins worrying and texting with one of my good friends who just happens to be a NICU nurse. She made me feel about as good as a mom could about it. By 7:15am things started to move, Jason got dressed in his scrubs and they started to move me to the OR. This OR wasn't nearly as cold as the one with the twins thankfully! We had a lot of waiting around to do, there was only one anesthesiologist and she was doing another patient. My OB even came in ready to go before she got there haha Then the spinal took forever to completely numb me. My last spinal numbed me so much I never felt any of the tugging and pressure everyone is always talking about. Felt it this time! That I must say is an experience I could have skipped. Thank God for calming yoga breathing to keep myself from freaking. Alice wasn't even half out when she started SCREAMING away! :) She was quite unhappy with her rude eviction, she continued to scream the whole time they cleaned her up! It was a beautiful noise! Her Apgar was 8 and 9, my OB called foul on not giving her a 10 since she came out ready to tell us all off! LOL Jason and the nursery nurse finally brought our newest baby girl to see me! She was so cute, 8lbs 5oz 20in, reminded me exactly of her big sister Naty! After a few minutes Jason went back to our room with her to wait for me. After what felt like forever, they were finally done with me and I got to go be with my baby and husband.

Our hospital stay was uneventful, always good. The morphine made me itch like crazy but I was so happy I didn't get sick coming down off the spinal this time! Alice was a champ at nursing and we seemed to be settling in to a routine already. The on call pedi said she still heard the murmur but didnt think it needed an echo yet and to just have my pedi check it in a few days. When it came time to be discharged the nursery told me Alice had dropped 8% of her body weight which is a lot but since she had wet and dirty diapers, they weren't worried yet, told me to keep doing what I was doing.

So long stories short, we got home and were adjusting well but Alice was becoming more jaundice and sleeping more and more. Turns out she was also continuing to drop weight. There wasn't anything wrong with her nursing skills, so it was me. I went through this with the twins too. With them we stuck it out 6 weeks trying this, that, and supplementing. I know how this road ends, there's something wrong with me and I just can't get my milk to let down. It's fine, I dealt with the big bad emotions of all that with the twins. So we just switched to formula and within a few days she was gaining weight and you could tell the jaundice was getting out of her system. By one week old her pedi also didn't hear a murmur anymore! Yay! That was great news!

Alice has been so much fun to have around, all her sisters adore her and want to help all the time with everything! She's a mellow personality who isn't afraid to have her opinion known when she cares, like when she's hungry or objecting to hiccups or pooping LOL She isn't so thrilled with the whole car experience and would prefer if we walked in her Ergo everywhere hahaha She reminds me of Jason's personality a lot so it should be interesting as she grows. ;)

And now the many pictures, sorry a lot are sideways;

Last pregnant picture!
Jason all ready to go hehe

First look

Alice Catherine <3
Smiles :)
After her first bath, that was exhausting!

Ready to go home!

Wide awake

Big sisters watching over :)
Having my first photo shoot

Midnight is party time right?

Almost 3 weeks old, nap on the couch haha
Audrey and Alice

Naty and Alice

Kate and Alice
Lotty and Alice