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Parker Newborn Shoot Sneak Peek

12 Feb


Yesterday Parker had his newborn shoot and besides 4 or 5 open air accidents (on the floor, on his blankets, on mom & dad) he was a champ!

Here is a sneak peek photo our photographer, Jennifer Soots Photography, posted on her Facebook page last night.

As you know, our family loves books/reading so we had to do a little bookworm picture! I’m sure this will elicit an “oh mom,” out of embarrassment later in life, but when he brings home straight A’s he’ll know who to thank!


A Birth Story

9 Feb

The funny thing is I went into labor the night I wrote my 38 week update post about how I hope he decides to wait a little longer because our house was kind of a disaster. I see you have your father’s sense of humor, little one!


But yes, on January 31st as I was finishing up that post my stomach started cramping and I assumed it was probably Braxton Hicks since I hadn’t experienced any yet and that there was no way that “this was it.” The contractions started around 9pm and after awhile they seemed to come and go at a regular rate and were getting more intense so I decided to start timing them with a contraction app I had downloaded on my iPad. After an hour or so they got so intense I made Eric be in charge of the app because after the pain would go away I would be so relieved I kept forgetting to hit “stop” and it was screwing up the analytics.


Eric was equally surprised with the contractions and kept saying, “is this really happening?” “is this real?” and then realizing how he thought he had more time to prepare stuff for his classroom before paternity leave, he hopped on the computer to draft a few emails in case I really was in labor. As he was writing emails I would trying to keep myself busy making sure we had everything packed and I would yell “start!” across the house and then “stop!” once a contraction ended. Eric was a great contraction timer!


After timing the contractions for a couple hours I looked at the data and it said my contractions were lasting 30-45 seconds and only 4-5 minutes a part so I decided to call the hospital. Luckily it was my OB on call so I got to speak to him and he basically said if I felt like I needed to go to the hospital to go, otherwise I could wait until morning (I had my regular weekly appointment scheduled for 7am the next morning). By this point it was around 11:30pm and I was tired and in so much pain I told Eric I wanted to go to the hospital and see if I could be admitted. In our classes they said to head to the hospital if your water breaks or once your contractions are 5 minutes a part so I was hoping I was far enough along. They’ll only admit you though if your water has definitely broken or you’re at least 4 cent. dilated. So we got to the hospital around midnight and the nurse checked me out and I was only dilated to a 1…cue sad face. All that pain for a 1?? They gave me the option of going home or walking around the hospital for an hour and getting checked again. Well I didn’t think I would be sleeping if I went home anyway so we stayed and paced the halls. After an hour they checked again and no progress, still a 1. So they said I would have to go home and they gave me some medicine to help me sleep. We got home around 2:30 am and while the medicine did not block out the pain it did make me groggy enough to get through the night.


The bad thing about taking the medicine at 2am was that I was out of it at 6am when I had to get up to go to my regular doc app’t. In fact, later I realized I literally don’t remember anything from that appointment – the drive there, checking in or sitting in the waiting room, being weighed, undressing…anything! I don’t even know if I did a urine test like normal. All I remember is my doc saying “You’re 4 cent. dilated so we can admit you.” YES! I had never been so happy. My doc’s office is at the hospital so all they had to do was wheel me to the 2nd floor and then I waited for the epidural. Earlier in my pregnancy I maybe half considered no drugs, but unless from the start of your pregnancy you start training your mind and body on how to cope with birth without drugs, I think it would be impossible. It’s also really hard to fight through pain like that when you know there is something that exists to make it go away! So I had no issues getting the epidural and once it hit I was perfect. I couldn’t feel anything from 8am until 5pm. Eric and I both took the day to catch up on all the sleep we lost the night before. A nurse would come in periodically to see how I was coming along. Midway thru the day they broke my water and finally around 5pm I was dilated to a 10. Now this is where the epidural failed me a bit. As the pain naturally increases you can have them up the dosage of the epidural. Well I started getting intense pain on my right side in my back and pelvis and I guess sometimes the epidural can flow on one side of the body more than the other. So even though they upped my dose all it did was make my left side extremely numb, while I could still feel on my right. So during the most painful part of labor my right side decided to fail me.


Now something I was naive about once I hit 10 was that I thought now all that was left was a couple pushes and he would be here. Oh how wrong! The actual pushing on average is a couple hours. Not sure how I missed that in our childbirth class! Over the course of the 2hrs I pushed many nurses would come in and they would all ask Eric if he wanted to move down from my head area and watch. He needed a shirt that said “the view is good from up here, thanks.” I’m not sure what went through Eric’s head as I went through the most intense workout of my life, but he was great. He would massage my back in the place that kept knotting up and would wait for my direction of anything I needed instead of trying to guess what he thought I needed (because trust me, when in labor the last thing you want is someone telling you how to do something or how you feel). He fed me ice chips and kept me motivated. So thank you for that!


Near the end of pushing I started to get really hot and they took my temp and it was over 100 degrees. My fever was causing Parker’s heart rate to go up a bit and so they brought in a critical care team to look him over right away just in case he had a fever too. This meant that I wouldn’t get to hold him right away like I had hoped but obviously making sure he was healthy is the better choice!


And then finally, gloriously, Parker was born at 7:32 pm. I would try to explain the feeling of pushing a human out of your body into the world, but it’s pretty indescribable. There is definitely lots of relief, I will tell you that! The critical care team looked Parker over and deemed him perfectly fine (and my fever had dropped as well) and so at last I got to hold him.


I also give a huge shout out to the nurses…it’s like they were picked just for me because after delivering him and while they were weighing him and doing the footprints, etc. they had Eric come over so he could take some pics but before he could really do anything one nurse stole the camera and said “don’t worry I know exactly what pictures you want.” I’m so glad for this! Being stuck in my bed I couldn’t see anything that was going on and she captured Eric looking at his son for the first time and holding his finger and all things that would have been missed by me otherwise. She also took shots that Eric probably wouldn’t thought of. The nurse also stayed around to take our first family portrait. Seriously, I don’t know her name, but thank you! After all the hoopla and he was in my arms Eric and I got the hour we wanted with Parker. He took to nursing pretty quickly and we just stared in awe pretty much the whole time. Around 9:30 we welcomed our family in and we had fun passing him around and seeing if we could point out features we saw of us in him.


They say your baby will come when they are ready and so I’m glad he was anxious to meet us early! Something I liked about his original due date was that it could be read frontwards and backwards (2-10-12), well the funny thing is that he still ended up being born on a date like that, 2-1-12. There was also a part of me throughout my whole pregnancy that hoped he was born on February 1st because that is the date my Mamaw (my moms mom) passed away. I know that may be a weird thing to say to some, but to me it just made her feel even more present and like she made it happen because she wanted that date to become a celebration and not just a day of sadness. There is also no question to me who his guardian angel is.


Well Parker is about up from his nap and will be declaring his need for food so I better get going, but thanks to everyone for their support and helping hands. Eric and I are very excited for this journey – and while I know it’s not going to be easy – it will be worth every minute!


Welcome to the World Parker

3 Feb

February 1st, 2012, 7:32 p.m., 7 lbs 6 oz, 20 inches long


Less than 48 hrs old and he’s already stolen too many hearts to count

30 Weeks

7 Dec

To celebrate hitting the big 3-0 Eric and I decided to take Parker for some glamour shots 🙂 I had extra money in my flex account at work and if you don’t use it by the end of the year then you lose it so we decided to spend it on an extra ultrasound so we could check in on the little guy and see how he was developing. This was the first time we experienced an ultrasound in 3D/4D and it was totally not as creepy as I thought it might be. Luckily Parker finally full-on looks like a little chubby infant and not skeletor. We could even see a bit of hair on his head, along with his eyebrows and eyelashes. And yes, he is definitely still a he – although they didn’t show that part in 3D. Boy still gets some privacy!

I’m excited to compare the pics once he is out! They advise you to drink juice before your ultrasound because the sugar will wake up the baby and make them more active. Parker was moving about the whole time, although he kept being shy and hiding his face behind his hands. But it was fun to watch him open and close his mouth, stick out his tongue and suck on his fingers. At one point his foot was almost in his mouth!

Yes, his home is slowly getting smaller and smaller thanks to his growing body – which is why in some pictures his nose and forehead look a bit distorted – like he is leaning his face against a window! It was hard to get a perfect picture, but you definitely get a pretty good idea! Hard to believe that he is still going to double in size or more! Right now it is estimated that he is a little more than 3 pounds and the average baby is born around 7-8 pounds. They also recorded the whole session so we have it on DVD (if anyone wants to watch a private screening just let me know…Bueller?…..Bueller?….) and they recorded his heartbeat and put it in a little stuffed monkey for us to take home.

Then last night Eric and I attended Part I of our two-part Childbirth Prep class. Let’s just say it was kind of comedic because first of all we were rushing to get there since we were both coming from work and then once we arrived we realized we were the only couple who forgot to bring a pillow and blanket for “relaxation” time. So we discretely told the instructor in order to not draw attention to ourselves, but then right when the class started she goes ,”ok so I know one couple forgot their blanket and pillow, anyone else?” and everyone stared at us. It really made us feel like stellar parents right off the bat, haha. I promise we’ll be more prepared for you Parker! But the rest of the class was very informative even though Eric complained about having to sit on the floor with his back not leaning on anything while he gave me a massage. Um, really? Your back hurts!? No pity party from this girl. Lucky for him he gave a pretty good massage which will definitely come in handy once I go into labor! Can’t wait to see what next weeks class will bring!

Past Bump Pics: 8wks, 12wks, 16wks, 18wks, 20wks, 21wks, 24wks, 27wks

Storybook Shower

21 Nov

This past weekend my mom hosted my first shower. She invited family from our side as well as family friends and some of my friends that I grew up and went to school with. Since Eric and I were both English majors in college and since reading has always been a big part of my life my mom decided to make it a “storybook” theme. From the food to the decor she made sure everything tied together perfectly.

In lieu of a greeting card she asked guests to bring a children’s book. We’re so excited to see Parker’s book collection grow! Reading is very important to us and we can’t wait for all our future nights of storytime. Once I got home I loved going through each books and reading the sweet messages from everyone.

Parker made out with so many great and thoughtful gifts! When I got home and hung up all the clothes Eric was like, “seriously!?” – because I still have two more showers! One thing I know for sure is that Parker will never go naked! Maybe now is a good time to say if you are coming to one of my future showers – we are all set on newborn to 3 month sleepers, haha! But seriously, how come the smaller the clothes are the cuter they get?
The doll furniture my mom used as decor in this picture was mine when I was little. I don’t think we’ll be passing that down to Parker, but maybe there will be a female Mini Matto in the future I can give it to!

Thanks again to my mom for throwing such a perfect party. It was very much appreciated and I think everyone left with a smile and full stomach! We are grateful for everything we received and now all that is missing is the baby!
Newborn pictures of Eric and I
Another thank you to my car buddy for the weekend! He was such a great sport as I rocked out to country music and gabbed about life. Love you Banjo!

More Gender Reveal Fun

7 Oct

My sister-in-law, Jill, couldn’t make it to our gender reveal. So I told her we would tell her the gender early if she agreed to make cookies for the party. Nothing wrong with a good food bribe! She happily agreed. Since I was doing a “balloon theme” reveal for everyone else, I wanted to do something similar for her. After browsing the web I found the idea of putting blue or pink confetti inside a dark balloon.

 Once the balloon is popped, the confetti will shower down revealing the gender. Well showering is not a strong enough word. It was more like blasted

In fact, the confetti shot out so fast and far that it took Jill a minute before she could find a piece to see what it looked like! Either way, it was a lot of fun & I know Parker can’t wait to meet his Aunt Jill!

And a special thanks to the lady at the party store who after hearing my idea definitely thought I was a crazy pregnant lady (which ironically is the same look Eric gave me when I told him what we were doing). In fact her exact words I believe were, “You want me to put what, where?” But she humored me anyway – again, much like Eric!

 And in case you were wondering, her cookies were adorable and delicious…just like any proper cookie should be. Way worth telling her our secret a few days early 🙂


2 Oct

Yesterday Eric and I hosted our gender reveal party! Many more details and photos to come, but for now a fun video of the main event. Big thanks to everyone who came and celebrated –  Parker is going to be one very loved little boy! We absolutely can’t wait!