Sunday, November 29, 2009

Abby's First Week

It's hard to believe Abby celebrated her first week of life yesterday. She's had many visitors who obviously love her tremendously. She's a lucky gal, that's for sure! Here's where she's at ESP:

She's eating all right! Nursing is going well for the most part. Thanks to somewhat flattened nipples the latching is the hardest part, but once she's on, she's good to go. Fortunately, one side is not as flattened as the other. I picked up a nipple shield at the advice of our VNA nurse which was a huge help for the sore nipple. It doesn't express as much milk, so I have a feeling she's needs to eat more when we use it. The test will be this morning. The nurse also recommended not keeping track of time and to let her eat until she's done and to also feed on one breast to make sure she gets the fore milk and the hind milk. So, I've tossed out my list and letting her get all the nutrients of the different kinds of milk expressed from one session. She's gaining weight and that's all that matters.

We've been fortunate so far to have a pretty good sleeper. She eats for about 45 minutes, is alert for about 30 and then falls asleep for about three hours. This has been pretty standard since we've been home. I'm waiting for her 10-day growth spurt, which according to the nurse she'll want to eat on the hour. Yikes. Tim and I have been working together as a team to make sure we are getting enough sleep. On most days we are getting 8-10 hours, just broken up into chunks. And, of course our peanut is sleeping well!

She's peeing and pooping on a consistent basis which means she's getting enough nutrition. Her poop is now the color it should be with breast fed babies. A mustard yellow color. Yum. Dad's been doing awesome with diaper duty and picking up probably 75% of the work. Thanks, Tim! He's so good....

Other notes:
  • We got out of the house yesterday for a couple of hours! yeah!! I was going stir crazy! We ran a few errands and brought Abby into only one store that wouldn't be swarmed with people. She slept the whole time.
  • My Dad shocked the heck out of us by calling Saturday morning and let us know he was going to "stop by" on his way home from camp. Now, camp is four hours north east of Portland, so from Burlington it was about a 7 hour drive. He called around 10am and stopped in around 6pm. I am very thankful he made the trip to meet is first grandchild. She's super lucky!
Here are some family pics:

Family Picture

Red hair?? We think so....

Grampy Dee's visit - although he may be called something different.
He thinks Grampy sounds so old.

PaPa Proctor


Auntie Erin

More pictures to come.....

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

For obvious reasons, this year Thanksgiving has an entirely different meaning. Over the last few days I've randomly thought of cute blog ideas and of course they all involve Abby - or at least something to do with the pregnancy, labor or delivery... I swear there are some things that no one ever tells you - almost like a mommy cult. You won't know until you have that baby in your arms. I'll get to all that in other posts, but for today, Abby wants to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!

We hope everyone has a fantastic day with family, friends and good food. We'll be skyping (is that a word yet?) at the Bell's house later on to say hi to the Dee family and extended families!

Yes, I know she's not really smiling, but seriously? I can't stand it...

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

First Pedi Appt - CHECK!

Our pediatrician is fantastic! His practice is actually a client of Tim's office (PCC) and he prides himself on being the first PCC practice in VT. He's very funny, straightforward, a huge supporter of breast feeding and personable.

Abby's birth weight was 7 pounds, 6 oz and dropped to 6 pounds 14 oz when we left the hospital. She's back up to 7 pounds. She's in great health and has beautiful coloring. The appointment was pretty quick, and it was nice to get out of the house, albeit a couple of hours. We're home now resting, waiting for the peanut to wake up...

Abby is four days old.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Daddy's Story

Before I forget (not that I ever will), I wanted to share our birth story, this one from Daddy's perspective.

Early last week, Jess was getting pretty uncomfortable and since we were really hoping to meet Abby sooner rather than later, we tried a little acupressure massage. A quick google search showed me a couple pressure points that were known to sometimes trigger contractions. One of them was the "Haku" pressure point, located in the webbing between the thumb and forefinger. Another was the "Spleen 6" pressure point, located about 4 finger widths above the inside of the ankle. On Tuesday night, I did some of this acupressure...who knows...maybe it worked?! Jess started showing some early signs of labor on Wednesday night and full-on contracations starting Friday afternoon.

We both went to work on Friday and I got a call from Jess around 4:00pm. Jess had been timing her contractions (using a cool contraction timer app I downloaded to her new Droid phone!) and they were regular, about six minutes apart. I rushed home, picked up a few groceries and relaxed with her at home Friday night. She was starting to have some stronger contractions and tried to take her mind off of them by doing some baking. She made some tasty pumpkin chocolate cookies and cheescake, which proved to be a good distraction. In retrospect, I should have made her drink more water, since when we ended up arriving at the hospital around 1:00am, she was very de-hydrated and needed to get some IV fluids.

We went to bed around 10:30, pretty certain that this was the real deal and we'd be waking up in the middle of the night to head to the hospital. Around 12:30, Jess jumped out of bed with a very strong contraction, claiming that her water had broken. I called the nurse midwife on call who chatted with Jess for a little while. She told us to come down to the hospital.

Thankfully, we're only about a 10 min drive to the hospital. We arrived at the ER, and they took us to the labor and delivery ward (which is absolutely beautiful, by the way). Some of the best views of the Lake and city I've seen. When our midwife Marty arrived, she examined Jess determing that she was 3 cm dilated. Marty's exam really triggered some intense contractions and I did what I could to help Jess through them. It was a really helpless feeling for me and I did my best to do what I could to encourage her. During some contractions, she looked at me in utter pain as her contraction began. I knew it would be tough to see her dealing with the contractions, and it definitely was.

They had a hard time giving her an IV since she was dehydrated and they had trouble finding a good vein. They had to call an IV nurse, and it even took her about 30 minutes to get the IV in her. Jess' plan was to do the natural childbirth experience, but unfortunately she had to work through some extremely strong contractions while in bed waiting for them to give her an IV. She wasn't able to move around to the tub or birthing ball as we had hoped to. After a couple hours, Jess declared that she wanted the epidural. Jess had told me beforehand to try to talk her out of it if she asked for an epidural in labor, so I did. Of course, I was totally fine with her getting an epidural (it was tough to see her in pain), but I did what I could to talk her out of the epidural. Then she said, "I know I told you to talk me out of it, but really, I'm going to get one. There's no award for doing natural childbirth. These contractions are for the birds". Surprisingly, there were very few if any curse words that came out of her mouth!

The epidural fairy showed up around 4am. At that time, she had progressed to 5cm dilated. After the epidural, we both slept for an hour or so. Around 6:30am, she had progressed to 8cm dilated and made a phone call to her Mom, who later told us she was surprised to hear Jess is such good spirits. The epidural really helped her out a lot.

They examined her again around 8am and she had progressed to 10cm, fully dilated and was ready to start the pushing stage. A new midwife and nurse, Krista and Allison, arrived to take over at this point. She started pushing at 8:30. Krista and Allison was *awesome*, coaching her loudly through each contraction. Later, Jess said that Allison reminded her of one of her old field hockey coaches. She was very encouraging and had a great sense of humor. After this whole experience, I have so much more respect for labor and delivery nurses.

Allison mentioned that an average pushing stage lasted 2 hours. Jess' pushing ordeal lasted twice as long. She really showed her true colors during the whole pushing ordeal. Lots of endurance, perseverance, and strength. It was a very "two steps forward, one step back" process, but Jess never was discouraged, pushing just as hard with each contraction. She was such a trooper and did a fantastic job. With all the intense pushing, her eyes became really swollen and sensitive to the light. The IV fluids made her really stuffy in the nose and it was sometimes hard for her to take the breath she needed before each push. I kept giving her a cold washcloth to wipe her face. Toward the end, we kept the washcloth over her eyes since it hurt for her to even open them up.

Before going in, I wasn't sure if I'd be able to watch the actual birth. When Abby's head finally started emerging, I found myself watching every progression! Jess wasn't able to see anything so we told her how things were going along the way.

At 12:37, Abby's head finally emerged followed immediately by her elbows, arms, and feet. The midwife, Christa, immediately put Abby on Jess' chest once she was born. I think I started crying before Abby did. Abby (aka Conehead at this point) was healthy and happy. Jess was swollen in the face, but happier than I have ever seen her. I didn't tell her until later that with all the swelling, she was barely even recognizable. Thankfully, the swelling went down pretty quickly and by Monday she was almost back to normal.

Jess' Mom arrived at the hospital about 45 minutes after Abby was born. Here's a photo of Mimi holding her new granddaughter:

A couple hours after the birth, we moved from the labor and delivery room to the maternity ward. We stayed there for a couple days as Jess got some help with the breastfeeding process and we enjoyed our first couple days with our new bundle of joy. Here's a photo of the little bundle, taken just after we put her to bed last night, our first night at home:

What an experience this has been so far. Jess and I continue to stare in amazement at our new creation.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

She's here!!!!

Apparently my Mother instincts are already spot on. Miss Abigail Jean Proctor made her appearance yesterday afternoon at 12:37pm. She weighed 7 pounds, 6 ounces and was 21" long. She is absolutely perfect in every way, no bias or anything. We're pretty sure she is going to have light hair, aka, be a red head, but are still figuring out who she looks like. I think she has Tim's nose and mouth.

Here's a quick snapshot of the birth story:

I started timing contractions at 1ish on Friday while I was at work - they were about 8 minutes apart and were just mild cramps. Got home a bit early, made some pumpkin chocolate chip cookies AND a pumpkin cheesecake. We went to bed around 11pm and I shot out of bed with a doozy one at 12:30am and also thought my water broke. Because I needed antibiotics for group B Strep, after talking to the midwife on call we got to the hospital around 1:30am. While I was hoping to go natural, I decided on the epidural and got it at 4am - I was 5 cm dilated at this point. Not too shabby. Tim and I had a few hours of rest, and at 6:30am I had another internal and they announced I was 8cm dilated. I started pushing at 8:30 and pushed for 4 HOURS (usually pushing is around 2)! They gave me a bit more pitocin after 3 hours to get the contractions going a bit more regularly. Let's say that last hour was a bit difficult. Miss Abby was doing well the whole time and the nurses were fantastic. I do have to say that Tim was the best coach of them all. I don't think he expected to be such an active part of the process, but he watched the whole thing. Because my eyes had swollen shut from the excess pushing, I couldn't see much of anything. Hence the reason for no pictures of me to date. I might get brave and post one, but it ain't pretty folks.

Here we are almost 30 hours post labor and I feel pretty decent. Bottom is a bit tender, eyes are still swollen, as muscles are sore.

As I type this, my little girl and her Daddy are farting up a storm in the chair. I know I should be sleeping or resting, but how can you rest when you've got the most awesome husband and most adorable little girl watching the Pats game.....and stinking up the room...ah, couldn't get any better.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Maybe this weekend??

hmmm, I think Miss Peanut might make her arrival sometime this weekend! Contractions have commenced :-) We'll keep you y'all updated!

Yes, this is a copy and paste from my facebook status...

She's on her way!

To our faithful readers, we are in the homestretch!

After Wednesday's interesting events of losing the mucus plug and having "bloody show" for a few days, our midwife did an internal at today's 39 week appointment. She confirmed the baby's head is definitely down, putting a lot of pressure on the cervix, and at zero station (where we want to be!). Miss Peanut is also about 7 pounds. And, that I am 80% effaced and between 1-2cm's dilated.

She also said, "I don't like to make predictions, but you probably won't go past your due date." AMEN!

Bring it on! Let's meet this little girl!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The growth of the belly......( I mean Baby Proctor)

This was a fun post to do! Wait until you get to the last one!!!

I can't wait to get back this size!
10 weeks 2 days

15 weeks 1 day

19 weeks 3 days

22 weeks 6 days

26 weeks 5 days

28 weeks

32 weeks

34 weeks 2 days

38 weeks 4 days (woah!)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Stats Take 2

How far along? 38 weeks, 5 days
Total weight gain: me: 35 pounds (ewwww) Tim: 15 pounds, but apparently he lost 8 pounds this week (riiiiight)
Stretch marks?None! Still looking good! (pheeeww)
Sleep: Not too shabby. Need the pillows and am tossing and turning a bit more because of sore hips.
Best moment this week: We felt her foot poke through the belly! It was honestly the weirdest sensation. As I was just getting comfortable in bed and my hand rested on my belly. All of a sudden her foot came through. I literally could have grabbed it! Totally freaked me out...
Movement: uh, say the least.
Food cravings: Apple cider. We have gone through probably 15 gallons of cider. I'm not exaggerating and it probably is more than that. We found a great deal at Costco for a two pack!
Gender: Still a girl
Labor Signs: According to our midwife, she's definitely head down. Which means, lots of pressure on the cervix I'm about 50% effaced, but not dilated.
Belly Button in or out? halfway out and very sensitive.
What I miss: Putting on sneakers and going for a run. (well, maybe not, but it sounds good :-P )
What I am looking forward to: a nice cold beer, a whole one, not just a sip.
Weekly Wisdom: Patience is a virtue I am slowly obtaining.
Milestones: I have almost nothing on my to do list and it feels pretty good. I have no plans and am no committing to anything in the foreseeable future. When someone asks me about something, I just say, "Ask the boss." I know after this kid is born, it's all her.....

Monday, November 16, 2009

No VT baby yet, either....

Tap.....tap.....tap......tap....tap.....I feel like I'm watching a pot boil! Ten days and counting :-) Well, actually, I'm really telling myself December 10th, 2009, so 24 if you're really counting. That will put us two weeks post due date and if this munchkin hasn't arrived, they are going in after her. I have a slight feeling she's going to keep us in suspense, but everyone cross your fingers she won't receive an eviction notice!

We're doing well as we approach the holy-cow-our-life-is-going-to-change moment of our life. My Facebook status this morning was "It's a good day when you're 9 1/2 months pregnant and DON'T drop the soap in the shower...." I know it's going to change tomorrow because I tend to drop the soap, not just once either.

Otherwise, we're ready for this baby!

The crossed off items include:
  • Meals frozen? Check! We've made mini lasagna's, apple bread, chicken pot pies, turkey soup, meatloaf, and we're working on baked ziti this week
  • Oil change and inspection? Check! Although, the car has to go back in this week because I hit a deer last Friday. Yes, according to Aunt DeeDee I tagged the family's first deer.
  • Nursery set up? Check! It's pretty adorable if you ask me!
  • Labor bag packed? Check! just need to remember to grab the tooth brush...
  • House clean?'s as clean as it's gonna get, folks. I can barely reach the bottom of the washing machine.
  • CPR certified? Check! Hopefully I remember what I need to do if something happens.
  • Cloth diapers and clothes washed? You betcha!
What do I have left?
  • Figure out birth announcements - which totally can wait. A good project for G-Ma, right?
  • Take more pictures/video of the baby belly. I'm trying to catch the foot action again on video. She stuck her foot out alien like, and it freaked. me. out!
As you can see...I don't have a whole lot left .....tap.....tap....tap.....tap....maybe if I ask sweetly she'll think about gracing us with her presence? hmmmm......

Monday, November 9, 2009

No Maine Baby :-(

We headed to Maine this past weekend for the annual Maine Brew Fest event. It's been a family (minus Mom) event for the past three years and an annual event for me for the past 9 years. How could I miss #9? For the record, Dad turned 60 on Friday :-) The crew was lucky this year since it had two built in Designated Drivers. Mom and me, being almost 9 1/2 months pregnant and all.

Unfortunately, I left my camera in Mom's car so I didn't get any pics, but I certainly have a few from Iphones and others. I'll the group shot when I get it from Rob! I think this year was one of the largest groups we've had! ***edited - here's the group!

Katie and I with almost 13 minutes left. The pretzel necklaces were a big hit. We keep on saying we should sell them since so many people ask. Next year....

We are officially done travel for the foreseeable future. We'll probably head somewhere for Christmas, but plan on sticking close to home for Thanksgiving. In fact, we'll either be in the hospital or crashing a family dinner in Vermont (Thanks, Katie!).

Sunday, November 1, 2009

As promised......

Yikes, I'm not sure who is scarier.....a beach ball or the kool-aid guy! In either case, you can say, "Oh, yeaahhh!" It was also a beautiful day to take pictures outside.

36 weeks and 3 days

Here are pictures of the nursery as well. We're about as ready as we'll get!

See the fabulous bed skirt? Yeah, my awesome Mom made that...The gorgeous quilt is on the crib and a bit hard to see. The picture near the lamp is a sampler made by Tim's mom. It says, "Love Bears All Things" appropriate since I work at VTB, but also adorable for a baby's room.

The futon on the left is ready for house guests! I had to cut out the left hand wall, because our peanut's name is on the wall. I couldn't figure out how to "black" it out. :-)

And the fabulous curtains Mom made, too! I am absolutely in love with the diaper bag I ordered from Amazon - it's on the chair and has 14 pockets -two of them insulated. It's the Skip Hop Studio Diaper Tote. You can also see several of the holiday specific animals my Aunt gave me for our shower.