Sunday, November 22, 2009


I am very into details. I especially love birth story details. When I was pregnant with Will, I had a lot of detailed prayer requests. I talked to God a lot about the details. I prayed for a healthy boy who would have lots of reddish-brown hair and blue eyes. I prayed that he would be born either during the weekday or on a night that my doctor was on call so he would deliver my baby. I asked for a sign we should go to the hospital and that we wouldn't be sent home once we got there. I prayed that I would not have to have a c-section and that my labor would be less than 5 hours. I prayed for him to be between 7 and 8 lbs and for him to come at least a week before my due date because my friend Lea Ann was getting married and I desperately wanted to go to her wedding (for some reason I thought if he was a week old I would feel like going?). I was delighted when we found out we were having a boy and thrilled when we had him because all the details added up. I went to the hospital on a Wednesday night because I didn't feel right and my blood pressure was up. My doctor was on call and I was so relieved. They decided to keep me even though my blood pressure came back down because I was 5cm dilated. My active labor lasted a little over 4 hours and we had a 7lb 9oz beautiful boy with tons of dark hair and dark blue eyes. He came 3 weeks early and was delivered by my doctor who had to leave town the next day for a family emergency. If I didn't have him the day I did, Dr. G may not have been there to deliver him. God granted all of my requests.

Here is Will at a few hours old:

all clean

When I got pregnant with Reed, it was quite a shock since we weren't planning to have another baby for a couple of more years. This time, my requests weren't so detailed. I pretty much told God to surprise me (and He did!). I really thought I was having a girl, but it truly did not matter. The only things I asked God for this time around were to have a healthy baby, delivered by my doctor (preferably on a weekday), no c-section, to know when it was time to go to the hospital (I wanted a sign like my water breaking - I may ask for something else next time!) and have plenty of time to get checked in and settled (I think we over-acheived on that one! ha!) and for my husband to be there. What the baby looked like, boy or girl ,when he or she arrived, that was all up to Him (as if it weren't anyway!). The circumstances surrounding Reed's birth weren't ideal for a few reasons, but I wouldn't change a thing.

That week in the hospital before he was born made me be still. It made me give up control. It made me appreciate things a little bit more. And once I surrendered to what I had in mind for our birth experience, God gave me back a few of the details that I wanted. I wanted to nurse this baby like I had done with Will but once we knew we were having a preemie, I had to let that go. And since we didn't know what we were having, I contacted the L&D staff prior to being hospitalized to make sure we would be able to introduce the baby to family in the L&D suite in my presence and not just out in the hall. But once my water broke and we knew that the baby would be going to the NICU, I had to let that go, too. I figured our tiny baby would need some oxygen support and maybe a feeding tube since babies generally don't develop their sucking reflex until between 34 and 36 weeks gestation. In my mind, we would have the baby and he or she would immediately be taken to the warmer, quickly assessed then whisked away to NICU and our parents would meet him or her there or possibly in the hall on the way.

But I have a BIG God. And He gave us a baby so healthy that he didn't need any oxygen. Not once. He wasn't a typical whimpy white boy. He was a strong boy who was screaming right after he came out. He was more pink than his full-term big brother. He had the nurses laughing at him because he grabbed onto the blankets in the warmer and wouldn't let go. His APGAR scores were 9 and 10! He was doing so well that I got to hold him until our parents came in with Will and we proudly introduced our new son. And for his second feeding that night, I got to nurse him. He nursed better than his full term brother!

God is into details, too. He is in the miracle business. Reed did have to stay in the NICU 18 days because his nervous system was immature and he would forget to breathe. The nurses were so impressed with him. I heard "He is doing so well for a 33 weeker!" many times. It was not by chance, though. It was the power of prayer and the work of the Lord.

Here we are introducing our new son:


And here is our first picture as a family of four:


Looking back upon the events surrounding Reed's birth, I am just so amazed and thankful. Things could have been a lot different than they were. Reed could have been a lot sicker. But he wasn't, because my God is gracious and giving. He is into the details.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Sweet Finley

My friend Darla, who I work with, brought her precious little girl Finley to meet Reed. Finley was born at 32 weeks but you would never know it looking at her now. She is so smart and sweet. Will kept taking toys away from her and telling her 'no' and 'mine' (his two favorite new words) and she would tell her momma on him. She gave Reed some sweet kisses and picked a flower on the way out. I could just eat her up with those cute pigtails.

kiss, kiss

Look at that smile!

Showing me her treasure

Monday, November 16, 2009

1 Month Old

Guess who is 1 month old today! Crazy, huh? We have been home almost 2 weeks and it has FLOWN by. We are getting into a semi routine around here. Well, actually, Reed is already in a routine! We just need to catch up to his organization!

He is such a good baby. He sleeps most of the day and night. If he's awake, he just looks around. When he is hungry, he starts to wake and makes little squeaky noises and stretches. If I don't get to him within 5 minutes or so he may let out a little cry. If I make him wait that long then change his diaper, he will cry a few times and may let out a small cry with gas pains. But other than that, he never makes a peep! He takes 1 bottle a day so we can put his multivitamin drops in it. He switches from bottle feeding to nursing very easily. He eats about every 3 hours during the day and occasionally wants to snack more frequently. At night he will do a 4 to 5.5 hour stretch! He is SO easy going.

At 1 month old, he weighs about 7lb (he was 6lb 14oz at our appointment on Thursday). He wears newborn size diapers and preemie and newborn sized clothes. He LOVES to be swaddled and if he doesn't go to sleep after eating, he usually will as soon as you swaddle him. He also loves to be snuggled in your arms or on your chest, which is quite a treat for me!

This will be our monthly picture bunny

Not sure what color his eyes will be. They have lightened a little but are still dark blue. I think Will's were lighter by this age, but I'm not sure if being a preemie delays the color change.

I can tell he's gotten bigger but is still so tiny!

He likes his NUK pacifiers but will also take a MAM.
This is where he spends most of his day (if he is not in my arms). We have this set up between our living room and dining room so I can be with Will but still see Reed. If you have a newborn or are pregnant and in the market for a packnplay, I recommend this one or a similar one with the newborn napper. We didn't buy one for Will because my mom was gracious enough to let us use hers when we needed one. It was the traditional one without a bassinet, so I felt like we needed one for Reed since leaving him on the floor on a blanket while I went in the kitchen wouldn't be an option with Will in the house. The newborn napper is wonderful. It is the perfect size for him and keeps him snuggled, plus it has the canopy to shade his eyes. This packnplay also has the changing station which we use for probably 75% of the diaper changes. It has a light/vibration/music station on it, too. We are VERY pleased. The directions can be a little tricky to follow, though, so I would read them all before starting assembly.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Black and White

My love for him is as pure as black and white.

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Isn't family wonderful? I come from a large-ish sized family. I have 3 older brothers and with 2 of them being married and having children, our small house can get full, fast! After my shower last weekend my oldest brother and his wife brought their children over to meet Reed. The kids weren't allowed in the NICU and Cynthia, my sister-in-law, got sick right after Reed was born so she couldn't visit until now. My grandparents were in town and it was my mom's birthday! Missing from the crew were my brothers Joseph and Sam. Sam's wife, Emily, was at a baby shower for her younger sister who is expecting her first baby in January! Babies are such a blessing and I am so excited for Tressie to welcome her new baby girl soon. I am sure Sam and Emily are overjoyed to welcome a nephew and a niece just a few months apart!

My niece, Emma Claire, with her newest cousin

Aunt Cynthia looked pretty content holding the newest member of the family.

And he looked quite content in her arms, too!

We had a mini celebration for my mom's birthday while so many people were here.

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And my grandparents got to hold their 6th great grandchild.

Baby Shower

My sweet coworkers threw me a shower last weekend. I was supposed to be pregnant at the shower and should have just finished up my last day of work the Friday before the shower. But as we know, God had other plans. So I left my sweet babe at home with his daddy, dressed my big boy up and went and enjoyed visiting with some wonderful friends and family. Reed got some practical and some fun things and a good time was had by all, except for the hostess' dog, who was a bit nervous having Will and a friend's daughter taunt her through the window. After we got home I realized that I hadn't gotten a group photo, or any posed shots. But I did take some pics of the yummy food!

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Sunday, November 8, 2009

Photo Op

I decided to actually 'pose' Reed for some pictures yesterday. All of the ones I have taken thus far have been snapshots and I have uploaded them straight from the camera. I enjoyed actually getting out a couple of props to set up and then editing a few of my faves (a little - I try not to mess with them too much!). Next on the list is to get out my new backdrops and play.

I love how the light is shining on the inside aspect of his fingers.

This bunny was a gift from mommy. I felt like he needed something special to mark his growth like Will's bear, but it couldn't be just any stuffed animal. I stopped by a gift shop I had never been in before and they had exactly what I was looking for. I almost got him an olive green corduroy aligator but then I saw this sweet floppy eared bunny hiding on the bottom shelf behind something else and knew it was for Reed.

These mums were a gift from Brad's parents. Don't you just love fall colors?

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Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Zoo

Friday Brad and I decided to make the best of the gorgeous weather and take the boys to the zoo. The last time we went was the zoo's anniversary weekend and it was PACKED. Yesterday, however, there were probably only 10 other people there. It was so nice to be able to see the animals and not have other people in your way. Will seemed to like it even more this time and tried to say some of the animals' names. I got to take Will on his first carousel ride! We think he liked it. He didn't smile much, but he did cry when the ride stopped and I took him off. I only brought my fixed lens with us so the animal pictures aren't that great, but they will have to do.
The giraffe wouldn't move for a better photo. Go figure.
Will checking out the "Gaffe"

Can't remember what this was, but I thought the markings were interesting!

The orangutans were in a festive spirit and having some pumpkin

Guess who 'wore' the baby for most of the trip?

Isn't this so sweet? He's probably going to kill me for posting these.

Reed couldn't believe daddy was wearing the sling, either!

A Mississippi brown bear

Pretty fall foilage with a pelican pruning himself/herself in the background.

I thought this turtle was pretty cute.

Newborn Checkup

My handsome little man

This sweet outfit was a gift from my wonderful friends, Haven, Lea Ann, Laura and Alyssa

This one is for Haven. Remember this hand gesture, Haven?

Ms. Kim (aka Jill)

Ms. Mary

We took Reed for his 2 day newborn outpatient checkup at the hospital. He weighed 6lb 2.5 oz! He had gained 1.5 oz from Tuesday, which was great because he hadn't gotten any formula since coming home and was strictly on mommy milk. We took him by the NICU to say hello to the staff and got a quick picture with Kim who took care of him for a couple of days and Ms. Mary, the secretary. Kim came and talked to me after I was admitted and we knew we would have a baby in the NICU. But for some reason after Reed was born, I kept calling her Jill. I must have called her Jill 5 times before another nurse corrected me! I plead postpartum brain cell depletion. It was so nice to go back to the NICU and take our baby in and back out with us!