Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bumblebee Birthday

Sharks chose a bumblebee cake for his birthday. So we had a bug-themed party.

Here's my attempt at the cake. It ended up looking pretty much like the picture. But I do not plan on making a cake like that again. I had no clue what I was doing and kinda had to wing it. Oh the stress. Ha.

I also made these cupcakes with little bumblebees made from yellow peanut M&Ms and tootsie rolls, with gumdrops for wings. They looked cute, but I discovered that my fingers are not meant for itty bitty projects.

Of course I "misplaced" my camera (again) so I have no pictures of the actual party. Turns out I just tidied it up somewhere different than usual.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Sleep and nonsense

Day 3 of me and the boys. So far so good. I am now convinced that the Lord created sleepy babies so that families could adjust slowly to life as a larger family.

And Fin is sleeeeepy. I have to wake him up to feed him every. single. time. Not that I'm complaining. And then he eats for approximately 5 minutes and he's back out again.

Understandably, I was nervous that he wasn't eating enough, but he was just weighed yesterday, and he has gained 14oz in a week and a half, so apparently he's just very efficient. Like, hey, the faster I eat the faster I get to fall back asleep.

(I'm right there with you, buddy.)

In other news, Anderson Cooper was on Jeopardy today. "What is, You Just Made My Day, Alex?"

And finally, the other night I had a dream that President Obama showed up in Ohio to promote his health care reform wearing a red wife-beater and with his hair in cornrows. Please, oh please, pause for a moment to picture that.

Somehow, ever since that night I have had trouble falling asleep. Probably cause I'm afraid I'll dream of Anderson Cooper with dreads and denim overalls or something.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Three Amigos

3 brothers.

2 seconds after this picture was taken, Deedo tried to throw Fin off the chair.

1 very tired (but very blessed) mama.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I like big cheeks and I cannot lie

We made it home from the hospital with the baby, but somehow, we forgot his neck.

No signs of it anywhere.

But he more than makes up for it in cheeky-ness.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Chocolate! Who can resist?

My latest foray into the world of library cookbooks is Bittersweet: Recipes and Tales from a Life in Chocolate by Alice Medrich.

It looked so good sitting there on the shelf that I decided to take it home with me.

And I promptly made the Chocolate Mousse.

The author's whole premise is that "Ordinary chocolate makes good-enough desserts, but great chocolate makes fabulous desserts." And she suggests to let the chocolate speak for itself, without clouding the recipes with a bunch of ingredients.

At first, I was a bit afraid that I wouldn't be able to make anything in the book because it all looked so amazing, but it turns out that most of the recipes are pretty easy, and most only have 4 or 5 ingredients.

Here is her Chocolate Mousse recipe. Very delicious, and made with water instead of cream. That makes it healthy, right?

Chocolate Mousse

6oz bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1/4 c water, coffee, or milk (or 1/2 c heavy cream)
3 large eggs, at room temperature
3 TBS water
3 TBS sugar

Place the chocolate and the 1/4 c water in a medium heatproof bowl in a wide skillet of barely simmering water. Stir frequently until the chocolate is nearly melted, then remove from heat and stir until completely melted and smooth.

In a medium heatproof bowl, whisk the eggs with the 3 TBS water and sugar until well blended. Set the bowl in a wide skillet of not-even-simmering water, and stirring constantly to prevent the eggs from scrambling, cook until they register 160 degrees on an instant read thermometer.

Remove the bowl and beat with an electric mixer on high speed for 3 to 4 minutes, until the eggs have the texture of softly whipped cream.

Fold 1/4 of the eggs into the chocolate. Scrape the chocolate mixture onto the remaining beaten eggs and fold just until evenly incorporated. Divide the mousse among the ramekins.
And I just ate one for breakfast. Like I said, it's good for you. Antioxidants, people!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Labor and Delivery

Here's the birth story - it's kind of long though! I just want to remember everything, so it's hard to cut stuff out!

Let me start by saying that a four hour labor sounds nice, in theory. And there are some perks, for sure. Like the fact that I got to see my boy pretty quickly. But those four hours were seriously intense.

And I was so not prepared. All last week I kept telling myself not to get too excited, that we still had at least a week to go before the due date, you know, all the stuff you tell yourself to hold on to any shred of patience you can - even though all I really wanted was to hold my baby.

Which meant that I had no bag packed or anything. (I think that's what they call "denial.") And I had planned on taking an evening by myself to go pray and prepare mentally for the birth - which turned into praying in the shower.

Well, the Lord has a plan, so we know that our little buddy was born at just the perfect time and in just the perfect way for him. Chet's Spring Break is this week (so you'd think we'd planned this baby's arrival to a T.) When really, you all know that planning is (clearly) not our forte. But God is good to us. And since it was the weekend, my parents were able to keep the boys so that Chet could stay at the hospital with me.

So without further ado, here is more info about the labor and delivery than you probably want to know.

3:45am, woke up with contractions and after I couldn't fall back asleep, I decided to get a shower. Contractions coming every 2-3 minutes. The same thing happened with Deedo's labor - really intense beginning, but then the contractions tapered out to every 5-7 minutes, so I was expecting the same thing. And that did happen.

4:45, After I dried my hair, I was pretty convinced that I was in real labor, so I called my mom to come over to stay with the boys, and I went to wake up Chet.

Based on previous experience, I knew I had to be rather, um, forceful, or he would just go back to sleep. None of this, "I think this might be it" stuff. So I just said, I'm in labor, get out of bed. Now. Of course, Chet still wanted to get a shower. No sense of urgency. Which I guess is a good thing, since it helps me relax too.

5, Mom arrived to stay with the boys. I think she was more stressed out than I was, cause the contractions were back to every 2-3 minutes and there I was, sitting on the exercise ball on the computer trying to preregister for the hospital. (Like I said, totally unprepared.) I knew we still had some time though cause I could still think, even though I did have to work really hard to relax and breathe through the contractions.

6, We left for the hospital. I was already feeling a lot of pressure down there which worried me a bit since I hadn't ever felt that til right before the boys were born. So the ride to the hospital was pretty uncomfortable. We made it to the Women's Eval unit, and it seemed like it was taking forever to get into a room, so I just told them that I didn't think it would be long, I was feeling pressure so could they please just call my doctor and get me into a room? They did.

6:30, Made it into a room. Still no doctor. It all becomes a blur at this point. I was at 9cm when they checked me. And I just sat on the ball some more, stood with my arms around Chet's neck, did a lot of swaying. My goal was to stay standing or sitting until the time came to push. I really wanted the baby to descend as much as possible all by himself, and I wanted to work with my body to relax and enable that to happen.

Finally there was so much pressure that I had to push, which is when my water broke. Everywhere. At that point, everything seemed to stop. Even though they were still coming regularly, I got some relief from contractions, and kept saying I just wanted to rest. Which I was able to do.

I know that sometimes can happen, I had just never experienced it before. I remember feeling like I was sitting in a cloud. How weird is that. I know I was in pain, but it was almost like I couldn't feel it as intensely for awhile.

That is when I realized that I just did not want to push at all. I wanted to sit there and let the baby come out all by himself. It was a real mental struggle to tell myself that I would actually have to do some work to get this kid out.

As I "rested," I could feel him descend, also something I was never aware of with the other two. Finally, I felt that "ring of fire" (and let's just say that Johnny Cash will never sound the same again.) Four contractions later, and out he came. (Like it was that easy. Yeah, not so much.) My doctor let me deliver in a squatting position, which was new for me. Gravity is the best.

It was definitely the hardest I have ever had to work in labor, both to fully relax and to push. I assume that's because my body was doing the same amount of work in less time to give birth, hence a higher pain intensity.

I really felt like he was stuck and I kept saying, "I can't do this, he's not coming out." But apparently by then his head was already out. Thanks for the heads up, doc. Ha. I did not want to tear this time, and somehow, I didn't. I don't know if it's because this little guy was my third, or what, but I am very thankful that the Lord protected that um, area.

Fin was born at 7:41, so we were only in a room at the hospital for about an hour. And the nurses were great and let me do whatever I needed to do. They even said that they could deliver the baby if the doctor didn't make it, but thankfully he did.

All in all, it was four hours of serious pain, but it was only four hours. In some ways, I'd way rather have a longer, less intense labor, but I'm pretty sure we don't get to choose things like that.

And now we are home. Sharks came down with croup while we were still in the hospital, so Chet was up all night with him. Needless to say, we are exhausted. And really praying for the baby to stay healthy.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

This is what happens to the third born

(Quick note: I wrote a post all about the labor and delivery, but it got to be a bit long so I'm not sure if I'll post it. So if you are interested in reading it, leave a comment and maybe I'll post it after all.)

Anyway, I forgot to take my camera to the hospital. So we have no fresh out of the womb shots of Fin. Which is really ok with me cause they are kind of gross. I just want him to know that even though there is no proof, I really did give birth to him. Promise.

38 (or maybe 39) weeks

Can't remember when I took this, but it's the last one I have of Fin before he came out. Not the best pic, but I want to remember the hugeness.
And sheesh, don't I look ready to roll?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Unexpected Laughter

This morning I was sitting in bed nursing the baby, with Deedo standing at my elbow, kind of right in line with Fin's rear end.

(And I should mention that Deeds has been a bit timid around the baby - totally unsure of what to make of him.)

Which is precisely when Fin let it rip - I'm talking a big ol' baby poo explosion. Loud.

Deedo's face was priceless, like Mama, what was that awful noise?! He got his panicky, about to cry look on and backed away really quickly.

So, so funny.

I tried to explain that sometimes babies, um, poop. And I think he mostly understood.

Though he has been a bit more skittish around the baby ever since he realized that the baby makes noises.

Monday, March 8, 2010

There once was a Sharks and a Deedo...

And now there's a Fin.

Samuel Finlay, born March 6, 2010 at 7:41am. 8lbs 7oz.
Samuel is a family name on Chet's side. Finlay is a Scottish name, and it means "little blond soldier," which seemed fitting in our family.

(We are planning on calling him Samuel, at least for now.)

(But we are also indecisive so we are keeping our options open.)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Rotund but still a little bit fun

When I was pregnant with Sharks, my sister and I came up with some awesome labels for the stages of pregnancy. (I can't remember if I have written about this, pardon my non-functioning brain if I'm repeating myself.)

First, there's Pleasantly Plump (also known as the "Is she-isn't she?" stage, or the "I just look chubby" stage.)

Then we have Large and In Charge, my personal favorite, because this is when you look pregnant but don't yet feel (or look) like a whale.

Finally, there's Rotund and No Fun. I think it's pretty self explanatory.

The thing is, I want to come up with a name for the "Immediately After Baby Pops Out" stage. Something that encompasses all the elation and joy, plus the moment you realize that even though you thought all your baby weight went straight to your belly, now you can see that your belly was only hiding your enormous thighs.
My best idea for the moment is A baby! What good tidings, but look what your belly's been hiding!

So come on now, I know you can come up with better than that. Any suggestions?