Thursday, December 30, 2010

15 Weeks Old!

I am writing this post almost 2 weeks late. Unfortunately most of the details have slipped out of my memory, so this will be a short one. On a positive note, I did A LOT of video taping so this will not be a forgotten week.

Alexa celebrated her first Christmas eve & Christmas morning. Christmas eve was spent at my Dad's house. Alexa did really well being out all day. She even had a chance to see Santa. I loved watching Lexi, Matt & Jackson lay on the ground together. I think Matt was the only one who had an sense of what was going on. I know one day in the near future they will be playing together. I really hope Alexa enjoys having all the boy cousins.

Christmas morning was at my Mom's house. Alexa watched her "Brother & Sister" Carson and Bengal go crazy with their gifts. She seemed very concerned with how crazy they were acting. We will have to explain catnip to her one day in the distant future. Alexa received some amazing gifts from Grammie and her Aunts and Uncle. We did film most of the morning, so I know one day she will enjoy watching what Christmas was like way back when.

The day after Christmas we drove down to Greenville. Alexa slept most of the way in the car. We did run into a little bit of bad weather but made it in safely. Alexa had a good time with her uncles, grandpa & great grandparents. Uncle Chase made Alexa laugh while talking about football players. Austin enjoyed playing with Alexa & she seemed to feel the same way. I love watching her interact with them.

After Greenville we drove down to Atlanta to visit Donna & David. Since Donna had a rather serious surgery just a week before she was not able to hold Alexa. We were able to put a pillow down & she laid on her lap. They both enjoyed the company & shared smiles and laughs. I am really glad we were able to visit with them even if it was only for a short time.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

14 Weeks Old

We started the week off with Justin's work Christmas party. We had a great time. I really enjoyed meeting other spouses & their children. Alexa had another chance to meet Santa. She pulled his beard down & then smiled for a picture.

This week was the first week of our holiday travel. We drove to St. Louis on Friday & then drove the rest of the way to West Virginia on Saturday. Alexa did great in the car. She slept all the way on Friday & most of Saturday.

Sunday morning we went to church with Jay, Susan, Little Justin, Caleb, Mamaw & Papaw. Alexa got a lot of attention. She was presented with a small bible & introduced to the church. It was a proud moment for the Cox family. We had lunch with the entire family including Jill, Olivia, Mady & Emma. Sunday evening we went over to Dina's house where Alexa met Dina, Jared & Elliott. I am not sure if Alexa really appreciated the company. She was very unsuccessful with trying to sleep. Right when she would close her eyes one of the boys would make a loud noise. When we made it back to Jay & Susan's she slept really well. This was the first time she went 10 hours between bottles.

On Tuesday we celebrated Christmas with the Cox's. It was a fun time with lots of pictures. Wednesday we drove to Cincinnati for our next family visit. We spent the evening with Grandma before settling in for the night. Alexa had a rough night, but we survived.

Thursday was our visit with Grandpa, GB, Jeff & Maggie. Alexa was in a bit of a grumpy mood. She took a long nap & then another short nap. It was a nice week over all & we are looking forward to continuing our traveling.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

13 Weeks- 3 Months!

Our baby girl is 3 months old.

On Friday we went to Overland park to a hibachi restaurant. Alexa did amazing! We were at a table with 4 adults in their early 30's. I can tell when we arrived that they were nervous about the baby being there. Alexa exceeded all expectations. She sat on my lap and watched the chief. She did not seem to mind the fire one bit. We all had a great time & got lots of compliments on how calm and happy Alexa was. We decided to stay over night at a hotel. Alexa had her second swimming experience. This time she was able to go in a normal size pool. The water was really warm & she loved it. She discovered the ability to kick & she was happy to show us.

Saturday we headed to down town Kansas City. We did a very small amount of shopping & took in all the beautiful Christmas decorations. We ate lunch at the Crayon Cafe & even saw Santa. Once we got home we started our "Christmas Eve" celebration. Since we will be out of town on the real Christmas & Christmas Eve we decided we would celebrate early. We all put on our pajamas and spent time as a family.

Sunday morning was "Christmas." Alexa received some awesome gifts from Grandpa & GB, Grandma, Santa & Mom and Dad. I am well aware that she had little understanding of what was going on, but I am happy that we started our new family traditions. We spent the day in our pajamas watching lots of Christmas movies including Justin's favorite Polar Express and my favorite Elf.

On Monday, Alexa and I decided to fight through the very cold weather to run some errands. We completed the child care enrollment. This process has taken us several hours & countless headaches. Fort Leavenworth offers two child care options. The first is the standard day care & the second is in home care. Both programs are run by the child development centers & require the same standards. My original thoughts were to sign Alexa up for the daycare center. We have since found out that the current wait is about 10months. So we are going with the in home care.. lol. I am working on interviewing the available houses & making a decision. Alexa will not be starting child care until I start working & Justin leaves for Iraq. As strongly as I feel about babies being home with their Momma's, I need something to help me stay busy while Justin is going. I am hoping this is the best thing for both Lexi & me. We are also signing up for KinderMusik which is a Mommy & me group, swim lessons & a baby gymnastics class. We are going to keep as busy as possible over the next year.

Alexa has started having conversations with us. We will coo and she will in return. This goes on for several minutes & she loves it. She changes her pitch & length of noise. Every day she seems to amaze me.

As a requirement for Alexa's child care, she needed to get a physical. We went exactly on her 3 month birthday. She weighs 11lbs 6oz & is 23inches long. I was a little concerned about her only gaining a 1lb in the last 3 weeks, but the doctors reassured me that she is doing great. We also had Alexa's first dermatology appointment. The doctors are not currently concerned about her strawberry. I was told that they typically stop growing between 5 & 6 months. From that point they will start flattening out, lighten in color & start to blend with the rest of her skin. 30% are usually gone by age 3, 50% by age 5 & 90% by age 7. Caucasian babies tend to have the most cases of strawberry and have been seen in as much as 10% of newborns. Though the doctors do not know what causes a baby to develop a strawberry they do know that they do not lead to any long term conditions. As long as Alexa's strawberry does not bleed or develop into a scab they will prefer to leave it alone. The dermatologist says mother nature leaves a better mark then the scar that would be the result of any laser treatment. But... if it does bleed or develop into a scab this is a sign that it is not break down correctly & they would consider using a laser to help the healing process. Alexa will go back in just over a month to have it looked at again.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

12 Weeks Old!

The week started out with the birth of Alexa's newest cousin Jackson. We cannot wait to meet him in just a few weeks.

This past weekend, Justin & I attended a marriage retreat hosted by a chaplain in the Army. This meant Alexa would be in the child care. My original intentions were to keep Alexa with us & hope for the best. Once I looked at the schedule, I realized that I would have to leave her at some point. It would not have been fair to her to sit in her stroller or on our laps for an extended period of time. So Friday night she spent a few hours in the room next to us. The girls in there were great. Whenever I checked in on Alexa they were playing with her or holding her. We got a lot of compliments on her calm & happy personality. (She takes after her Daddy) They must have really worn her out. She slept really well Friday night.

Saturday morning Alexa went back to the child care. Once again she had a great time! In the afternoon we decided to try the indoor water park. We were unable to find a swimsuit in Alexa's 11lb size, but did find an 18month that worked for the day. The water in the baby pool was only about a foot deep & very warm. Justin put Alexa's legs in the water & she did not seem to even notice. She spent a few minutes just hanging there. After a while I put Alexa on my legs & let her rest her head on Justin's belly. She seemed to really enjoy the small waves & even tried to drink the water (which she does during every bath). We had a great first experience with water & I am really glad Justin was able to share it with her.

This week we scheduled Alexa's dermatologist appointment. It is scheduled from December 16th at 12:45. We have to drive to downtown Kansas City to the Children's Hospital. There are not a lot of pediatric dermatologist in the area. We are very optimistic that everything will go great & no action will be necessary to her strawberry.

Alexa has been doing awesome with her night time sleeping. She slept 6.5hours straight 3 nights this week. She would then wake up & eat then go back to sleep for another 3hours. We had one really rough night, but I cannot complain. She is doing awesome!!! Another big change for Alexa is her teeth. My poor baby is less than 3 months old & we can already see 4 teeth in her mouth. They are on the top right side of her mouth. She really gets upset when she wakes up or even sometimes in her sleep. We use a small amount of baby Orajel to help with the pain. This is not something we should be dealing with for at least another month, but there is no control over it.

Alexa has turned into a really happy baby. She smiles & "talks" to us all the time. I love the interaction & all the changes she is making. She currently weighs 11lbs 7oz.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

11 Weeks Old!

Alexa celebrated her first Thanksgiving. I loved that she was able to be in Chicago. This is a tradition I have had my entire life (minus last year) and I am glad I was able to share it with her. We had a great day. Alexa sat in her kick & play while the rest of us ate. She was able to at least be apart of this important day. I feel very thankful for my husband, daughter & the rest of our families.

On Friday, Alexa was able to meet the rest of the McKinney family. This included her 4 month old cousin Ethan. She slept through the first part of the visit, but woke up for some cousin play time in the evening. Overall I believe she enjoyed the evening. By 7pm, Alexa was worn out & everyone could tell. Matthew & Alexa both had major meltdowns. Luckily we were able to calm then & have a peaceful night.

Saturday night was the first night Alexa woke up with a big smile on her face. This was during her 4am feeding. I loved every second of it. Unfortunately I made the mistake of smiling back & kept her awake a little longer than normal. Oh well.. it was worth it!

Sunday we had a long 8 hour drive home. We left right when Alexa went down for her morning nap. She slept 3 hours straight, took a bottle & went back down for another few hours. She did awesome until the last 30 minutes. I know her back had to be bothering her & she was going to make sure we knew it. Fortunately after all her napping, she still managed to sleep from 9pm to 4am.

Alexa has been very successful with full feedings. She is now eating 3-4oz every 3-4 hour. I would LOVE her to get to 4 hours, but we are not there yet. She eats about half of her feedings right at the 3 hour marker and the rest around 4 hours. Right before bed we try to get her to take at least 5oz & will stop her at 6oz. At night she goes about 4 hours. This has made a huge difference is my day. I am more aware of what her needs are & can predict her behavior a little better. With all of our traveling over the last 3 weeks I have almost completely stopped breast feeding. This really make me sad, but it is my reality. Nursing takes a lot longer than bottle feeding & that is why I have transitioned to bottles. My goal is to continue nursing during the night feedings & maybe the morning feeding. Alexa will take bottles for the 3-4 day time feedings.

Alexa did amazing at her Christmas photos. She did really well wearing her dress & let us put her in anything adorable. She did not cry at all & even stayed awake. I was not able to get her to smile once we started, but I am 100% OK with that. I believe the flashes were a little overwhelming to her. We were able to get at least 10 awesome shots. Getting Alexa's photos done is my favorite activity with her. I love having the photos to look back on. I am going to try to not get her photos done next month, LOL!

Alexa has made huge changes this week. She smiles all the time. She will smile at her toys & people. She smiles when she wakes up & while she is feeding. She has started talking to her toys. It started with her mobile & now it is all over her noise making toys. I wonder if she thinks she is singing with them or if she is just making noise. Alexa is also sleeping in her crib at night. OK, well Justin moved the crib into our room.... I feel like this is still making a step in the transition of her sleeping in her own room. She cannot see me in her crib & we keep the room very quiet & dark when she is in there. When Justin leaves in January I plan on keeping her in our room anyways, so this just makes it a lot easier.

Goal for the week: Get Alexa on a 3 hour cycle, Eat-Play-Sleep!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

10 Weeks Old!

Alexa handled her second airplane right like a champ. She slept from take off to landing. We were both very glad to be home with Justin.

Alexa had her 2 month well baby visit. She weighed in at 10lbs 10oz, 22.25inches with a 15.5in head circumference. The pediatrician said everything looked great. She measured her strawberry & said if it grows in the next 2 months then she will refer her to a dermatologist. Hopefully this wont be the case, but only time will tell. Alexa seemed to really be effected by her vaccines. It broke my heart to hear her screaming in pain over the course of the 2 days that followed. She also seemed very sleepy & not interested in her usual toys. I know the importance of the vaccines & that helped me get through those days.

On Tuesday the three of us packed up & started making our way to Chicago. Alexa slept the entire 4 hours in the car. Once we arrived at our hotel, Alexa decided it was time to stay awake. We had a really hard time trying to get her to sleep. I ended up putting her in the bed with me & spent most of the night soothing her.

Wednesday Alexa met her Great- Grandpa & Grandma McKinney. This was one of those moments that I was really looking forward to. This was also the day Justin & I decided we were going to start transitioning Alexa to a flexible schedule. We started reading the "Baby Wise" book and decided to take a few tips from there. We decided we would start with simple changes. 1st being full feedings. Megan said this was the best advice she was given. It took about 1/2 a day to get this going. 2nd we were going to get her on the sleep, eat, play rotation. This has been a little harder, but we are working on it. As she masters these two things we will then work on a bed time routine & night feedings.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

9 Weeks Old!

Alexa & I spent the entire week in Cincinnati. On Friday she met Maggie & Jeff. Maggie gave Alexa a white Miami teddy bear & the most adorable jean overalls. Saturday Alexa was able to meet most of the Haggerty family. Of course Alexa was asleep during most of the visit. We had a great time hanging out with everyone.

Sunday, Mom hosted a family dinner. Megan, Matthew, Jan & Heather were able to come over. Heather gave Alexa a bath, which I am sure they both enjoyed. Matthew & Alexa will look at each other, but wont make any jestures towards one another. It wont be long before they will be playing together.

On Tuesday I took Alexa to visit her Grandpa & Grandma at their work places. I loved watching my parents in their proudest moments.

This week Alexa was also able to meet a handful of my high school friends. Its crazy to see some of us married, some with children. Time seems to be going by very fast.

Alexa has started sucking on her fist. I think she would suck her thumb if she could figure out how. Instead she tucks her thumb under her fingers & put the entire thing in her mouth. She has also started rubbing her eyes. She has done this one or twice previously, but this week she started doing it several times a day. Her laughing & smiling has also increased. After spending a week and Grandma's house we found out she LOVES lights. Justin & I went out and bought her a few new toys to her stimulate her.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

8 Weeks Old!

Alexa has eye lashes! When she was first born Justin & I were both concerned that she did not have any. Over the last 8 weeks they have grown in. I noticed this week that they now look full in length & thickness. I love her sooo much :)

Over the weekend Justin & I decided to go to Topeka to visit the Watson's. For those of you who do not know I have a small number of relatives that live there. My Great Aunt Judy & Uncle Tom invited us to their home. Alexa loved the attention. She was also able to meet my cousins Eric & Mark as well Connor & Austin.

Everyone took turns holding Alexa. While my Aunt Judy was holding Alexa, Connor (10 year old boy) told her to put Alexa down and let her crawl around. He later told us that he thought she looked bored sitting in his Grandmother's arms. It was adorable. He was rather disappointed that all she did was sit there & drool. Oh well!

On Wednesday Alexa & I flew to Cincinnati. I planned this trip around Justin's training in Texas. It was a great way for Alexa to meet the rest of her Aunts & Uncles with out missing out on any Daddy time. Going through security was the hardest part. The stroller & car seat went through the scanner with out any issues. I then proceeded to carry Alexa through the medal detector. Once again everything went smoothly. Then they had to scan the breast milk. This not only takes a long time, but really attracts a lot of attention. We survived & had an hour to sit at our gate. Alexa took a bottle right before we boarded the plan & fell asleep. She did not wake up until we landed. She was the perfect baby. Lets hope she is that way when we return home next week.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

7 Weeks Old

My poor baby girl has cradle cap (Seborrheic dermatitis). This is very common among newborns. It is dry skin that is on her head & ears. There is not much you can do for it but to keep washing & applying light lotion. If losing all her hair was not bad enough, now she has flakes all over her bald head. Oh well, that's why hats were invented.

Alexa has aged so much in this last week. Her neck muscles & head control are sooo much better. She enjoys being in the upright position & moves her head around to see things. She also has a new roll on her leg, so precious! Her lip is also looking a lot better. I have been working hard at getting her to suck on the pacifier instead of the lower lip & it seems to be working.

Halloween! Our little pumpkin was adorable. Justin & I have nicknames for each other and both of the cats so it was only fitting that Alexa gets one as well. We have been calling her "punkin" (yes, I spelled that correctly). So for Halloween we searched EVERYWHERE to find a costume that would fit our barely 9lb baby. After no such luck we settled on a hand me down pumpkin costume. This actually turned out to be perfect & Alexa loved it.

On post it was decided that Halloween should not be celebrated on a Sunday for religious reasons, so ours was on Saturday. Justin, Alexa & I sat outside right at 4pm. At the time it was 72* & sunny. It was a beautiful way to start out trick or treating. Alexa of course got a lot of attention & even some candy from Anna, our 2 year old next door neighbor. Don't worry we re-gifted the candy to the next trick or treater. Our neighbors across the street came over to introduce themselves & their 6 children as well as invite us to their bonfire. We had a great time meeting all of the neighbors and sitting around the fire. If we are fortunate enough to stay in Kansas long enough, Alexa will have many children to play with. We ended the night by walking to our friends house to visit. By 8pm the sun was down & we were all wearing many layers of clothing. Alexa was one worn our pumpkin & slept very peacefully in her costume & blankets. Over all it was a great evening.

During a 3am nursing session Alexa started coughing. This is very normal for her, so I patted her back & then re-latched her. Then the craziest thing happened, milk came out of her nose. My little baby looked so afraid & in pain. I suctioned out her nose & rocked her back to sleep. It was very scary for me. Looking back on it several hours later I realize it was not that big of deal for her.

Alexa had a doctor's visit today for a weight check. Since we are breast feeding it is impossible to know how much she is eating in a day. Therefore these visits give us reassurance that she is eating enough & supplementing is not necessary. Alexa weighed in at 9lbs 8oz, this is the 34th percentile for girls. At her 1 month visit she was only in the 15th percentile. I am sooo excited about her growth. Not only is she gaining enough, but she is actually passing up other babies her age. They attempted to get a length for her but it turned into an impossible task. She insisted on arching her back & bending her knees. Since her length is not an important factor in determining if she eating enough, they decided to just leave it blank until her 2 month well baby visit on the 22nd. I will work on getting her to lay straight so she is more prepared next time.

I guess that's about it. This week Alexa & I will be flying to Cincinnati while Justin goes to Texas for some Army training. I am looking forward to introducing Alexa to the rest of her "McKinney" family.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

6 Weeks Old!

Alexa's first full week in Kansas! We started out our weekend by taking Alexa to the pumpkin patch. We found a great farm about 30 minutes away in Missouri. They had a very large pumpkin field, hay ride, train ride, petting zoo, corn maze & toys for the kids. Of course we only opted to do the pumpkin patch & some photos but this will be a great place to come back to when Alexa is a little older. It is very windy here & the farm was no exception. We had to keep Alexa bundled up but she did not seem to mind. We picked out her first pumpkin (which weighs more than she does) and took lots of photos.

Saturday night we attended a bonfire with people Justin will be working with. Alexa received lots of attention from some of the other wives. She didn't seem to mind the fire & slept right through it.

Ever since Alexa was born I have been worrying about how much or how little she is eating. I decided I would pump for the entire day & keep track of how much she is taking in. She ate anywhere from 3.5oz to 5oz each feeding. I could not believe she was eating that much. Total for the day she ate 24oz after her 6 feedings. The common equation used to determine how much a newborn should eat is their weight times 2.5. Alexa was approximately 8lbs last week so she should be eating 20oz. Of course this not an exact science & she has grown since her last measuring, but this was reassuring for me. I will do this once a week until I am comfortable with her nursing routine.

I love watching Alexa grown! The down side is having her move out of her newborn clothes. Justin tried putting on her brown jumper but was unable to do so. Our little (or not so little) girl can no longer wear some of her newborn clothes. I guess we will be starting to box some stuff up to save in case she gets a little sister one day. The clothes we are having the most trouble with are one piece items. Alexa still has a very small stomach and mid section. Her legs seem to be where the trouble is at. Anything that has closed off legs are too short on her. We also moved her into size 1 diapers. There is no turning back from here!

On Tuesday morning our furniture arrived. I have been very anxious for this day. I knew it would be stressful, but exciting at the same time. Alexa of course was a little challenging, but we were completely unpacked before bedtime on Wednesday.

This week Alexa has discovered my hair. She will pull it when she eating, burping, getting rocked to sleep or just hanging out. Any suggestions on this would be great. I love seeing her becoming more active, but it does hurt. We have also started having Alexa sleep in her crib. She really does not mind being in her room & has been doing great. At night I still prefer her in our room. This makes it easier for me to nurse her with out her really having to wake up. When she does wake up to eat it she usually does not cry. I can hear her while she just whimpering & therefore she does not get upset. I am afraid to move her to her room while she is so quiet. I would hate to not be able to hear her. I guess we will work on that in a few weeks, I am in no rush.

Oh yah, big news for Alexa. Her clogged tear duct is no longer clogged. We have gone 24 hours with out cleaning the yellow gunk out of her eye.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

5 Weeks Old!

This was a big week for our little Alexa. Justin and I made the decision to dedicate Alexa at the church we were married in. Grandma Sandy came in town on Friday. We went shopping to pick out a dedication outfit & some 3 month clothes that Alexa will be wearing in a few months. Grandpa David came in Saturday morning to join the fun. We were also able to spend a little bit of time with Nana Donna & Pepere David Saturday evening.

Sunday morning was a challenge to get out the door by 8:30am. Grandma Sandy stayed with us over night so she would be there to help us get ready. Somehow we left just 2 minutes late! We went to our last bible study & said some good byes. Then it was time for Alexa's dedication. We choose Sharon King to present Alexa to the church. She has been a very meaningful person in our marriage and really helped us get through the difficult times of the pregnancy. The dedication was perfect & we have it all on video. After the ceremony we went to lunch with the Dieckmanns & Lexi's Grandparents. It was a great weekend & we are really appreciative to everyone who was able to come visit.

Alexa had her 4 week (1 month) well baby visit. She is now 21inches long and weighs 7lbs 14oz. Her head circumference is 35centimeters. The doctor had no concerns with her health. Alexa's next doctors appointment will be at her 8 week check up. This will also be the start of her infant shots.

Monday was our first day at the hotel. I was really nervous about how Alexa would do in a new environment. Being at the Marriott did not effect her one bit. She did her normal sleeping/eating routine. She attracted a lot of attention at the restaurant and lounge. I was actually surprised on how many people asked us about Alexa.

The car rides were very stressful for all 3 of us. The first day, Alexa managed to sleep 3 hours straight before we stopped to eat and stretch. She eat & then went back to sleep until we arrived in Knoxville. This made me very hopefully that the next 2 days would go as smoothly... I was wrong! Thursday was scheduled to take us 7 hours plus stops. We made it an hour and a half before we had to stop. The total trip took us almost 12 hours. This included a 3 hour stop in Paducah to see Anthony, Jennifer & baby Chloe. Friday was our shortest car ride. We made it to Fort Leavenworth at 2pm. Justin was able to meet a few people he will be working with & we were able to see our new house.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

4 Weeks Old

Alexa had a busy week. On Friday we traveled to Greenville. Alexa did great for the entire 2 hour drive. She met her Great-Grandparents & saw her uncles as well as a few of her Grandparents. We went to Justin's High School Alumni BBQ & about 20 minutes of the homecoming football game. This was Alexa's first night away from home. We brought her pack 'n play, bouncer & a ton of diapers and outfits. Of course we over packed! Alexa & I slept in Chase's bedroom. She did great the entire night. She woke up twice, ate & then went right back to sleep. It was really nice to wake up on Saturday & feel some what refreshed.

Saturday morning Alexa met Leah & JB. JB was not sure about her at first but ended up giving her a kiss on the forehead before he left. I am sure in a few years they will be playing together. Saturday evening we went to a friends house to celebrate their birthdays. Alexa was a great sport & slept through most of it. I was able to get a lot of my questions answered from Liz & was given a lot of great nursing support. Jerusha & Alexa had their first dinner date!

Sunday morning we attended church. Alexa was grunting & cuing all through bible study. She did really well through the contemporary service. She did wake up & decided she was hungry. I took her into the prayer room, fed her & made it back from the last few songs. The music in there can be loud, but Alexa does not seem to be bothered by it. We had lunch with the Dieckmanns & then spent the afternoon as a family.

This week Alexa & I have been running errands together. I started using the stroller & have been getting quite the work out getting it in and out of the car. It is amazing to me on long our simple errands have been taking. But we did manage to get a little bit of clothes shopping in & more importantly picked up Alexa's birth certificate.

Alexa has started to use her hands and has been focusing on objects. I had her under her play gym for 20 minutes at a time each day this week. She LOVES the music & tries to grab at the toys. Justin discovered Alexa's love for music. At times it is the only thing we can use to get her to calm down. She loves to hear people sing & gets upset when it is just back ground music. So far she likes Ben Folds & Maroon 5! Alexa also started outgrowing her newborn outfits. I cannot believe we are already packing up some of her clothes. She is also very close to transitioning into size 1 diapers. My baby girl is growing up sooo fast!

I wanted to share somethings that I am come to realize over the last month. A successful day should not be measured by how clean the house is or even if you were able to get your hair brushed. But instead it should be measured by a happy baby & a well rested Momma. Getting to take a shower, doing a load of laundry or making a nice dinner are just bonuses (they don't happen around here anymore). I have been doing my best to sit back and just enjoy the time I have with Alexa. I know there will come a time where I do not get to sit on the coach and stare at my beautiful baby. So for now, the bed may not be made, my hair will be kept in a pony tail & dinner will consist of whatever we manage to piece together but we will be enjoying every minute of it.

I may not be able to post the next few weeks. But to give you an idea of what we will be up to: Alexa will be getting dedicated, have her one month check up & we are moving half way across the country. I will continue to do my best to post pictures & give updates.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Week 3- Alexa found her voice

The title sums it up. Alexa June is no longer my quiet, always sleeping baby. This can be attributed to the jaundice clearing up, which is a good thing. But I feel like I have a new baby laying in my arms. She has become more vocal in her sleep as well as her awake time. She has started a grunting noise which is only adorable after 8am! When she is hungry, everyone knows it. At night she makes lots of sounds which wake us up, but not her. Its precious!

She has also had an increase in hiccups. She can get so worked up the minute they start because she knows they will be around for awhile. I wish there was more I can do for her. But she does sound like a squeaky toy, which is the cutest thing ever. We will try to get it on the video camera before she out grows it.

This last week we had visits from Megan & Matthew as well as Jay, Susan & Caleb. I love having people come down to visit us. Matthew & Alexa did not show much interest in each other, but they both had a sense that there was another little person around them. Susan was able to give Alexa part of a bottle & Jay really enjoyed holding her for over an hour.

Monday was my first day at home alone with Alexa. I was actually really looking forward to this. Looking back I realize how foolish I was. I started out the day catching up on stuff I have fallen behind on, had breakfast, fed Alexa, gave her a bath, had lunch, fed Alexa, did some laundry, cleaning, fed Alexa, thought about making dinner but did my toes instead, fed Alexa & then 8pm came & I was EXHAUSTED! Tuesday started out OK, I decided to take it a little bit slower. I did everything I had to do & then tried to relax a little bit. Right before bed time (8pm) I started having bone pain all over my body. After taking a warm bath I felt worse. Throughout the night my temperature hit 101.6. I woke up feeling worse & ended up in the doctors office. My temp then was 103! I was told to take Tylenol, lots of fluid & rest. If my fever is not gone in 72hours I had to come back. When we got home from the doctors Alexa & I took a 3 hour nap. I felt a lot better after that & hopefully will continue to improve.

This week Alexa has become more alert & aware of her surroundings. She will turn her head and even her eyes when Justin or I start talking. On Monday while I was holding her, she followed Justin with her eyes from one end of the room to another. We know she cannot focus on us that far away, but she can certainly tell we are there. She is also getting a little bit of control of her hands. She gets very frustrated when she loses her Binky (pacifier) so I started moving her hand behind it to teach her how to hold it in. She has been able to leave her hand up there for a few minutes at a time.

So far our biggest challenge has been nursing. She seems to be getting a lot better at it, but is also getting slower. Some days she will want to eat for an hour at a time every 2-3 hours. The biggest mistake I made with breast feeding was pumping & giving her bottled milk before she was a month old. Justin & I took a class and were taught this specifically and yet I still gave in. It was very hard to watch my 3 day old cry because she was hungry. I only gave her 3 bottles total that first week, but now she is getting 2-3 a day :(. I ALWAYS try to nurse her first & she will eat for at least 20 minutes. If she cries and roots around like she is hungry after that point I will give her a few ounces from a bottle. I know I am only making it harder on myself in the longer run, but I am doing my best. I am really hoping before we move we can have a better grip on the nursing. Either way at this point she is still only getting 100% breast milk, which was my goal.

This week has also been challenging for us at night. After the first 2 weeks of decent sleep we were not prepared for what this little girl had in store for us. Once she is asleep she will stay that way for 2-4 hours. The problem this week has been getting her to sleep. Nothing seems to soother her and at times it can take up to 2 hours to get her to finally go to sleep (then she wakes up hungry 2 hours later). When she is crying it appears that she is hungry. If I know she had enough to eat, then I try to get her to take her binky. We learned that she is usually not hungry after her normal eating. If I try to nurse her longer or give her a bottle she will take it because its comforting, but then she will spit it all up & sometimes more.

We are down to our last 2 weeks in Columbia. As excited as we are for Kansas and the opportunities it is bring for Justin, we are really sad about leaving South Carolina. This has been our first "home" together, where we got married & where Alexa was born. Columbia will always have special meaning to us & we know we will be back many times to visit. Tonight is our first "Going away dinner," I love having meals with our friends, I just hate that its because we will be saying good-bye. I hope that Alexa finds friends as great as the ones we have & if she were to move away from us for schooling or a career that she finds a family like the Dieckmann's who will make her feel like one of their own. The made us feel like we had family in town & people we could always depend on. OK, I need to stop or the hormones are going to kick in.

Happy 3 Weeks Alexa!

Monday, September 27, 2010

2 Weeks Old!

Time is going by fast. Alexa lost her umbilical cord at 9 days old. There is still little pieces that need to finish drying out, but overall it looks good. On Sunday she had her first trip to church. We had to get up 2 hours early to get everyone showered, dressed & fed. Alexa slept through bible study. Margaret Ann & Marie had a great time loving on her. After bible study we changed her & I fed her. We then made it to 45 minutes of our regular church service. Alexa slept in my arms the entire time (even through the music). After the service we went to lunch with the Dieckmann's. Everyone sat and stared at her while she slept in her carseat. We then spent the afternoon watching our first family football game.

Wednesday was Justin's last day home on paternity leave. He drove us up to Charlotte to pick up Megan & Matthew. Alexa did awesome in the car. I actually had to wake her up to eat once we arrived. I was sooo excited to see Megan after 3 months and meet baby Matthew.

At Alexa's two week appointment we received a bunch of great news. She gained 9oz. since last Tuesday. After all the breastfeeding concerns I had, this was really reassuring that she is getting enough to eat. So we will be able to continue for now. :) We also found out her biliruben level went down to 11.2. The doctor said this is a great thing. We do still need to make sure she is having frequent feedings & give her some time in the sun. The doctor said everything else looks "perfect". I was given the option to bring her back next week for a weight check just to make sure the nursing is still going well.

I cant believe how much she has changed for the last 14 days. She still sleeps most of the day, but her awake time is very different. She seems to have more control of her arms & legs. She also has more of an interest with her eyes. Though she cannot really focus on anyone or anything in particular, she notices when things change.

One of my favorite things that has changed is her ability to distinguish me from anyone else. I am not sure if its through sent or touch yet, but she will instantly calm down when I hold her. I love being that comfort for her. Motherhood is everything & more of what I thought it would be. It still amazes me everyday that Alexa is 1/2 Justin & 1/2 me. I just hope time can slow down just a little bit.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

1 Week Old!

Our little princess is 1 week old. I am so in love with my daughter. I cannot get enough of her. As I am typing this, she is curled up on my lap taking a nap. I spend the entire day either feeding her or holding her. At night she sleeps right next to the bed & I wake up periodically just to make sure she is OK. So far Motherhood is amazing. I love being able to know when she needs to be fed & what her face expression means. When she is hungry, she will suck on her palm & keep her mouth wide open. When she is sleepy she kicks her feet like crazy until she is swaddled. When she is awake & content she likes to stare at everything!

On Tuesday we had her first pediatrician appointment. She weighed 5lbs 12oz, which is what she did when she left the hospital. The doctor said this is a good number, since they usually lose weight in the first 4-5 days and then start gaining it back. We also had to get her jaundice level measured. They pricked her foot & then drain the blood into a vial. It takes about 15 minutes & we both hated every minute of it. Her level was 17.7! We were told to bring her back in the morning and get it drawn again.

After going through the traumatic experience of getting blood drawn again on Wednesday we were told her level went down to 15.6. This was such a relief for Justin and I. Since the number is decreasing they do not have to treat her. We will still continue to make sure her feedings are frequent & try to get her a little bit of sunlight. After the doctors visit we took Alexa to get her newborn pictures taken. She was not a happy baby. She dirtied 3 diapers & had to be fed twice. It took us 2 1/2 hours to get all her photos taken, but they turned out great. We were given the unedited photos on a CD & we posted them to facebook. We went a little over board on purchasing photos, but have no regrets. So there will be lots of photos in the mail for Grandparents, Great-Grandparents & Aunts and Uncles.

Alexa's nursing has been getting increasingly better each day. Breastfeeding is something I am really wanting to do & Alexa seems to be on board. She eats about every 3 hours. I let her decide when she wants to eat, but I never let her go more than 4 hours between feedings. She will cluster feed about twice a day (eats once an hour for 3 hours consecutively). But it seems to really be working & I could not be happier. We will work on getting onto a schedule in a few months.

Sleeping has been getting easier each night. I try to go to bed around 10pm right after feeding the baby. She will then wake up around midnight, 3 & 6. I have only fallen asleep feeding her once & she started crying so I quickly woke up. I also try to get at least 1 nap in during the day.

So that about sums up everything that is going on with our little lady. It has taken me over an hour to write todays post. Since I started writing I had to stop for 2 dirty diapers (one of which was was major blow out) and 1 feeding. Everything seems to be taking so much longer these days, but its worth every minute.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Alexa June Cox

On a warm September day, our lives were forever changed. At 9:45am on September 16th I was officially in active labor. The doctor broke my water and started a low dose of pitocin, I was 5 centimeters. The contractions started becoming painful around 10:30am and I requested an epidural. At that time I was 6 centimeters. To receive the epidural I had to get a full IV bag pushed & a few medicines to help my stomach. At 11:15 the anesthesiologist arrived. She was AMAZING! I had a little bit of trouble staying in the position while it was getting placed. I was having regular, painful contractions & hunching over was not something I could comfortably. It took about 20 minutes for the epidural to take full effect. At 12pm I was 9 centimeters. I could not believe how quickly I was progressing. The nurses started setting up the room for the delivery. The baby warmer was turned on, blankets were laid and many people started entering. At 1pm I started pushing. Justin held my left leg & a nurse held the right. Another nurse was counting to ten three times in a row with each contractions. At first they had to tell me when I was having a contraction. I felt as though no progress was being made & requested a mirror. I was able to watch the progress, which kept me motivated. At 2pm we could see the head getting ready to come out. The doctor had to cut an episiotomy to make it possible for Alexa to deliver. I could not feel the procedure, but could hear the skin cutting. At 2:13pm I took my last push & Alexa June arrived. She immediately started crying.

Justin watched Alexa get cleaned up & then she was placed on my chest. We had a great few minutes as a family of 3. Over the next 30 minutes our room was returned to its pre-delivery state. It was surprising to me how quickly I was disconnected from all machines and we were left alone with our baby. Justin then went out to the waiting room to announce Alexa's arrival to Grandma Sandy, Grandpa David & GB (Grandma Beth). Alexa had all of her tests done in our room. She weighed 6lbs 3 ounces and was 19 3/4 inches long. Later that day we were moved to the Nesting Place. This is where we would spend the rest of our hospital stay.

The first night was very surreal to me. Justin slept more than 8 hours & I slept about 2, all of the adrenaline kept me going. Alexa stayed in the room the entire night. We struggled a little bit with the breast feeding, but she slept very well besides that. I could not stop staring at her. The nurse took her out in the middle of the night for a little while to give her a bath and Hep B shot, and that was really the only sleep I was able to get.

Friday was another great day. Mom, Dad & Beth spent most of the day with us. The Pediatrician examined her and said she looked great. We could not agree more! The nurse we had that day was great! She was very friendly and helped a lot with breast feeding. Donna & David came down to visit in the evening. We also had friends stop by. Margaret Ann, who is due on Halloween got to hear me talk down the horrifying text messages I sent while in labor. And they got us a cute "Carolina Girl" Burp cloth to remind us that no matter where we go in the world. Alexa will always be a Carolina Girl! My Dr. came by in the morning and said I looked fine as well, so he went ahead and signed my discharge papers so I would not have to wait for the on-call doctor. All we needed to go home in the morning was for Alexa to be discharged and for Justin and I to do the mandatory instructional and informational things.

Friday Night was a little scary. I got a little bit more sleep. But the nurse told us that Alexa was rated an 11.9 on the Jaundice scale. And they do not let babies go home from the hospital if they are over 12.0. They took her back for a couple hours and we are guessing they put her under a UV lamp because the score went down to 9.8. The nurse we had though was fantastic. Justin liked that she had a Masters in nursing. She probably gave me the most help and encouragement in breast-feeding.

Saturday morning went very well. She passed hearing and vision, cleared the pediatrician and was good to go. We got the cars packed up. Justin and I took Alexa to settle our new family in our home. The cats were a little skittish, but have been warming up to having a new little human. After a few hours of getting everything unpacked and settled in, we let the rest of the family come over to spend time with us. We had a good visit with everyone but we were ready to spend our first night together as a family. Alexa did pretty well, there was one 2-hour period where she was fussy, but we got her over that and the rest of the night went pretty well.

Sunday morning started out with a farewell visit from Grandpa & GB. We knew they could not stay forever, but we were sad to see them leave. Later in the morning we had visits by Donna, David, Bill, Chase & Austin. During the afternoon, Alexa & I took a nap together and then we watched football as a family. Grandma stayed with us for dinner & part of the evening. I could not have asked for a better support system. Not only has she been very supportive in breast feeding but she has kept our home clean & organized. I will miss her help & company. Sunday night was the first "challenging" night. Alexa did not want to breast feed & in turn she fused all night.

Monday started our first day getting into a routine. Justin ran errands most of the day & I stayed home with Alexa. My Mom spent her last day helping us out and enjoying time with her Granddaughter. Alexa had her first bath at home. She then spent most of the day napping. Overall it has been a great few days. We are looking forward to spending the next 10 days together before Justin has to return to work. We cannot believe how in love we both are with our new daughter.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

38 Weeks

We have officially met every goal that was set for us in terms of keeping the baby in. Justin and I are both hoping for Alexa to arrive any time now.

Yesterday was our 38 week appointment. I weigh 121.8lbs! Alexa's heart rate was 154. My fundal height was 37 centimeters. My blood pressure had to be taken twice. The first time it was 140/100 and the second time it was 140/94. This is borderline concerning to them. So they planned on checking it again on Friday morning. The doctor said my cervix was 3+, 80% effaced & the baby was at +1 station. So there has not been any notable changes from last week. He did say I had "bulging membranes." This basically means that the baby is low and pushing the amniotic sac through the cervix. This does not mean anything more than my water will more than likely break on its own when I do go into labor. I also had my membrane swept. This is an aggressive internal exam that separates the amniotic sac from the uterine wall. We are hoping that it will help bring Alexa into the world sooner rather than later. Sometimes people will have immediate responses (I did not) and sometimes it does nothing to progress things.

Around 9pm I had a huge burst of energy, it was almost concerning. Then within an hour I felt as though every bit of energy left my body. I thought I was going to be sick, so I moved into the bathroom. I ended up getting very dizzy & sitting on the bathroom floor until Justin came in. He immediately called the doctor who told us to get to the hospital ASAP. We arrived at the hospital just after 10pm. My blood pressure was about what it was at the office, but we were able to lower it by having me lay on my left side. Dr. Nwanagu checked me & said I was the same as I was in the office. He wanted to keep me for a few hours to make sure the blood pressure was not as issue. At 12am I was checked at 4 centimeters & at 2am I was 5 centimeters. It was decided that I would be admitted to labor in delivery.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Full Term (37 Weeks)

We are once again amazed that another week has passed. Alexa is now considered "Full Term." If labor were to start, then it would not be stopped & she should be able to enter the world with no age related complications. Most doctors prefer babies to stay in as close to 40 weeks so they can gain more weight (about 1/2lb a week) which will help them maintain body temperature and make eating a little easier. So we are not in a rush to meet our baby girl quite yet. The average 37 weeker is around 6 1/2lbs and 20inches.

This past week has been relatively slow. I knew the bed rest was coming to an end & should enjoy it while it lasts. On Wednesday I had my 37 week doctor visit. I am now 120.2lbs, 120/92 blood pressure & everything else looks good. We had a NST & passed with flying colors. There have been no changes in the contractions or dilation. The doctor told me he will see me in another week. He does not think I will go into labor before then (neither do I). I was also taken off of ALL restrictions. I am looking forward to swimming & taking nightly walks with my hubby. We are no longer considered high risk. Yah Alexa!!!

Friday, September 3, 2010

36 Weeks

We made it to the doctors goal. This week has been as expected. I laid in bed and prayed for Alexa to stay put a little while longer. On Sunday we had our church baby shower. It was a lot of fun. I was really happy with that I decided to go. Alexa was once again spoiled with adorable outfits, decorations for her room & other items.

Wednesday was my weekly doctor visit. I was given a NST(Non-Stress test). Alexa like always did great & even put on a kicking show for all of us. My contractions were showing 3-5 minutes apart and lasting around a minute. This is when things got a little grey. At 35 weeks 6 days the doctors still would prefer the baby to stay inside, but there is no guess on the best approach for this. I was told to go home, get some lunch & rest. I returned for my follow up visit at 2pm. The doctor then decided that my cervix was progressing from the morning visit so he sent me to the hospital.

I was put on an initial high concentrated dosage of magnesium sulfate and then a continual drip for 21 hours. The contractions were gone! I could not believe it. It was the first time in over 2 weeks that I went more than 15 minutes with out a single contractions. I was taken off the magnesium to see what happened. It was not until 8pm that I noticed any change. As the night went on my contractions returned.

At 4am my nurse came in to do a cervical check. She said my contractions were once again 3-5 minutes a part and I am now 3 centimeters dilated.

At noon my doctor came by. He determined that my labor was not progressing to the point of needing more medicine to slow it down. We were given an ultra sound to verify that Alexa had enough fluids and then we were sent home. I will remain on bed rest until 37 weeks!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

35 Weeks!

We are officially in the home stretch. Alexa should be over 5lbs and 18 inches in length. Her kidneys should be fully developed & the liver should be processing waste products. She still needs to gain a little more weight to help her stay warm & her lungs will need a little more time to mature. I am fully confident that we can give her the time she needs.

This last week was an unexpected challenge for Justin & I. Not only was Justin in the middle of graduating from one class & starting another, but he also had to take care of all of my needs as well as the house. He has been doing a great job. He has been cooking, cleaning & running errands. I am not sure if he is ready for 5 more weeks of it.

The doctor this morning had me do a non stress test. This monitored Alexa's heart rate as well as my contractions. Alexa did great during the entire test. She got the hiccups & even started kicking the contraction monitor. My contractions were timing 5-7 minutes a part and lasting around 45 seconds. Since there was no significant change, the doctor counts this as passing. He wants to me continue on the procardia until early next week. At that point he feels we would have made it past the crucial period & it would be safer for her to arrive early then to continue the medication. I am also to continue being on bed rest. This made me sad because it means I will miss my baby shower on Sunday. We go back to the doctor's next Wednesday for another NST.

My goal this week is to stay in bed & keep this little girl cooking. I will also be sending Justin with a list of last minute items needed for Alexa's arrival. Thank you for all the support!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

8/21 1:30pm

My cervix was checked and I am now 2 centimeters & very soft. The doctor told us he felt he had 2 options. The first would be to keep me on the procardia for the 2 weeks or take a more aggressive approach with the magnesium. He felt the procardia was the better way to go.

He discharged me from the hospital under strict bed rest orders. On Monday morning he wants to check my cervix & decide where we go from there.

Alexa needs to stay in for at least 2 weeks & 5 days!

8/21 6am

The doctor informed us that my contractions are just as frequent as they were yesterday. If the fetal fibronectin test comes back negative & there is no change in my cervix then I can go home today.

Friday, August 20, 2010

8/20 4pm

The doctor decided to up my dosage of procardia to ever 4 hours. I had a few hours where the contractions appeared to be slowing down, but they picked back up since. Both the urine & blood tests came back clear. I will be staying at the hospital again tonight & tomorrow morning the fetal fibronectin test will be given.

8/20 11:30 Update

The doctor informed us that my contractions are coming every 5 minutes and lasting 45-75 seconds a piece. Until the contractions are less than 2 an hour, I will be staying in the hospital. He is running blood and urine work to make sure there is no under lying cause for the contractions. He is keeping me on the procardia every 6 hours. He said I may be on this medicine for a total for 2 weeks. At that point I would be 36 weeks and he would keep me on bedrest but no medicine. Tomorrow morning he is going to run a fetal fibronectin test. This test will tell him rather or not I am currently preterm labor. This was negative on Tuesday, but can change anytime.

34 Weeks & Growing

Last weekend Justin and I took our last trip to the coast. We went to our favorite breakfast restaurant & spent sometime in the ocean. We ended up watching some dolphins (which I thought were sharks) and then driving home in our soaking wet clothes. The beach will be something we both really miss next summer.

Wednesday morning I had my 34 week check up. I put on the usual 2lbs & had a good blood pressure. While the doctor was measuring my fundal height (33 inches) he noticed I was having a contraction. After discussing the frequency of these, he decided to put me on the monitor to get a better idea of what I was experiencing. 30 minutes later the doctor felt as though the contractions were strong enough and close enough that he wanted me to be observed at the hospital. Over the first few hours I was put on procardia. The contractions subsided for about an hour and then came back. I was then put on a single dosage of magnesium. This medicine has many symptoms. I felt very disoriented, weak and over all exhaustion. Like the procardia, the magnesium had temporary success. Since the contractions were increasing in frequency, the doctor felt he needed to take a strong approach.

I was moved to an observation room (right across the hall) and put on a continuous drip of magnesium for 15 hours. Again, I had the disorientation, weakness & exhaustion feelings. Unfortunately, it did not help me sleep. Justin stayed with me the entire time & sleep on a mini pull out couch. Around midnight they moved us (again) to an inpatient room in the high risk OB unit. We slept about 45 minutes at a time, woke up for routine checks and bathroom breaks.

On Thursday morning my doctor came in to see me. I was still only dilated 1 centimeter and he felt confident that the contractions were slowing down. He spent a few minutes reassuring us that hitting the 34 week marker was big. In the worst case scenario, Alexa would be born early but should only have a few temporary complications, if any. He decided to switch me back to the procardia to see if the contractions would stay low. Over the next 12 hours I started to regain my energy & positive outlook.

Thursday night was made up of fewer bathroom visits and only 4 nurse visits. We sleep 2-3 hours at time and it felt great. Around 2:30am I was put on my left side because the contractions were returning. At 3:30am the doctor was called. My contractions picked up to ever 3-4 minutes. Fortunately I was able to sleep through most of them because they are not painful. The doctor had my procardia administered 30 minutes early, which did not help the contractions. The doctor does not want to put me back on the magnesium, but will also not send me home while the contractions continue at this rate.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

33 Weeks

On Saturday we had our 2nd 4D ultrasound. Alexa looked adorable. The ultrasound tech called her a "chunky monkey." She has very full cheeks, her Daddy's nose & my chin. She was constantly holding her left hand up next to her face. The cord made it challenging for a decent picture, but we were able to get a few. Her head, belly & leg give the tech an estimated weight of 3lbs 14ounces. Of course this can be very inaccurate, but it at least means she is growing at the correct rate.

Monday was our last birthing class. I believe it was the most informative class in the series, at least for me. The instructor went over postpartum care, Alexa's first few weeks & then answered all of our last minute questions. I guess we are ready for our hospital stay.

Alexa will continue on her last growth spurt this week. She should already be almost to her birth length, so most of the change will be in her weight. Her head will increase about 1/4 of an inch in size to make room for her growing brain. Lastly, her skin will start taking on more of a pink color.

We have been working on the final touches in the nursery. Justin finished putting up Alexa's shelves & some Winnie the Pooh photos. The only thing it is missing is the baby & a few minor details. I have been feeling pretty good for 7 1/2 months. My feet & hands have experienced an increase in the swelling and my back is constantly sore. I have tried to up my water intake & elevate my feet as much as possible. There isn't much else I can do until the temperature goes down and this baby is born.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

32 Weeks

This past week has been a good one. Justin & I attended a breastfeeding course. We both learned A LOT & feel more prepared for it. We also had another birthing class. We learned about pain management & birthing plans. They are not pushing for us to have a birth plan, instead they are wanting us to be prepared for possible outcomes. Our last class is on Monday!

Alexa has been moving like crazy. She does not seem to be doing much sleeping. I can tell she is getting lower, but she can still kick my ribs. She should be around 3.75lbs and 17inches in length. All 5 of her senses should be fully working & she may even have hair.

We had our 32 weeks appointment yesterday. I put on 1.2lbs (114.4 or a total of 22lbs). My blood pressure was 123/95 & fundal height was 31centimeters. Alexa's heart beat was 134BPM and strong. I was also given a prescriptions for a yeast infection. It should be an easy fix.

I also expressed my concern to the doctor regarding the possibility of needing a C-Section because of my size. He said it was more about the size of the baby. He thinks a baby 7 1/2lbs or smaller should not be a problem. Basically saying it would be easier for me to deliver at 37 weeks over 39-40 weeks. So I should come off modified activity at 37 weeks (assuming Alexa is doing great) and hopefully will be able to successfully have a vaginal birth in the weeks following. I am still hoping to keep her in there as long as she needs, but not over my due date. He also said he will not let me go more than 1 weeks over my due date. So there is an end in sight... Alexa will be here by October 7th!

Saturday we have our follow up 4D ultrasound. This was a package deal we started in April when we found out her gender. This visit should give us more vivid shots of her face & allow us to watch her movements. We are both very excited to see her. I am also planning on heading to Cincinnati to meet my nephew Matthew. I am still comfortable traveling, but will need to be back before August 18th (my next appointment)... so hopefully he will arrive soon.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

31 Weeks!

Alexa this week should be around 16 inches long & about 3lbs 3 ounces. She should be starting her final growth spurt. For the next 7 weeks she should gain up to a half a pound a week. Her last major organ development is the lungs. They will continue to mature for the last 2 months.

She is very active little girl. I feel her constantly moving & she can even wake me up through out the night. This week I was able to recognize her hiccups. I can feel them low in the belly & she usually has them for about 7-8 minutes. The doctor says this is a good sign that all is well.

The past weekend we had our church picnic. Of course it was over 100* with a little breeze. I stayed in the shade & had lots of fluids. We all 3 survived with out a problem. We also had another birthing class on Monday. I could really go with out watching the videos, but I guess they are apart of the experience. We learned more about relaxation methods & different laboring positions. Over all we both left there excited & well informed. Only 2 more weeks of this class.

We decided to try out the infant seat in my car. As expected it is a very tight fit. My biggest challenge will be trying to maneuver her into the car with out flipping it sideways. YIKES! Justin's car is 4 doors & holds the car seat a lot better. So we may end up switching vehicles for a few months (don't tell him). My car had a recall on the drivers airbag. After getting this fixed this week I was told my car needed about $2000 worth of maintenance done on it. Of course this was the dealers price, so realistically its about $800-900 and nothing needs to be done immediately. So we may just need up looking at replacing it before to long.

This next week will be a VERY busy one for all 3 of us. We have a list of things we "need" to do before our princess arrives & I am insisting on getting them done this weekend. We also have our breastfeeding class on Saturday morning. I have heard really good things about this class & am looking forward to taking a lot from it. On Sunday we are going to a BBQ at our friends on the lake. I cannot wait to cool off in the water.

9 More weeks!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The big 30!

Yah we are 75% of the way through the pregnancy. For some reason being in the 30's sounds way more pregnant than the 20's (which of course it is). Anyways...

This was a good week. We went to visit Jayson, Leah & JB. I was really worried about the drive, but decided that it was worth the discomfort. The way up there was not so bad. We did it in 2 days, so we had less time in the car. Sunday felt like an eternity. We ended up in the car for more than 10 hours. We only took necessary breaks, but the traffic slowed us down & it is over 500 miles! The visit on the other hand was really nice. We enjoyed having time to relax & talk. I know it meant a lot to Justin to have a little more time with his brother before he leaves.

On Wednesday we had our 30 week check up. I only put on 2lbs over the last 2 weeks. I am expected to put on about a pound a week for the rest of the pregnancy, so this is right on track. I cant believe I am admitting this, but at this point I have put on 21lbs. My blood pressure was right on the mark & Alexa had a heart beat of 158. This is the highest hers has been in awhile, but still nothing to be concerned with.

This last week I started having some pains in my lower belly with some contractions. The doctor was not concerned with the pain. He said it is one of those not fun symptoms of pregnancy. He was concerned with the contractions. He wants me to start timing them. I am suppose to write down the time whenever one starts. If I have more than 4 in an hour for 2 hours straight then I need to call him. Hopefully over the next few days I will have a better idea on rather they are something we need to worry about.

That's about it... only 10 more weeks until Alexa's due date!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

29 Weeks!

This past week has been brought back a sense of normalcy to our lives. On Friday we saw Dispicable Me & Saturday we did next to nothing. It was very relaxing & nice to spend some time alone. After church on Sunday we hung out at our friends house. Though we were suppose to swim (which I was really looking forward to) because of the weather we ended up playing Apples to Apples inside. I really enjoy this particular group of friends. Justin is able to hang out with the guys and I can talk to the girls about the pregnancy or really anything Justin may not want to talk about. I was able to ask our friend Liz some questions I had, which is always a big help. I am starting to feel more confident in the decisions we are making & our ability to raise a child.

Monday was our first birthing class. Justin agreed to attend the classes with his full attention, but I know he was really dreading them. As we pull into the hospital garage we see a man wearing his Army uniform holding pillows under his arm. This was a great sign! It was almost instantly that Justin perked up. Not only did he realize that I was telling the trust about the Dad's to be attending the class, but that he would have someone to talk (or complain with). We caught up with Justin's new BFF and found out that he is an Army JAG Captain. Wow things could not get better in my mind. Not only was he Army, but he was a JAG officer, exactly like Justin wants to be one day.

The class was about as I expected. There were 10 pregnant women all due in either August or September & their husbands. One girl is due September 30th with a little boy, I felt connected to her for some reason... LOL! We did basic introductions, an over view of birth & some relaxation techniques. I have to admit that I did not learn very much, but do feel more confident in the labor process. Justin & I both had trouble with the relaxation stuff. We are just very high strung people & turning off the lights to take deep breaths just didn't do it for us. Oh well... there is always the epidural!

Our instructor explained that she would do hospital tours following each class of week, starting this week. So we decided to get ours out of the way. After being in the triage 5 weeks ago, it was nice to actually walk into the hospital on our own terms. I personally enjoyed walking past all the nurseries & seeing the babies. We did get all of our questions answered & hope we can stay calm to remember everything when the big day comes. Did I mention that it is only 11 weeks away???

On our way home from the birthing class Justin & I both agreed we enjoyed it. This was a huge relief to me. I know we still have 4 more sessions, a Baby 101 class & breast feeding class ahead of us, but it is progress. The baby 101 class is tonight. I really hope there is more to it then how to change a diaper, but we will see.

This week I have been feeling really good. Alexa is very active in my belly. I can completely tell her sleep cycle. She responds to the types of food I eat & plays a kicking game with Daddy. It's nice to have an "easy" week of pregnancy. I am finding it a little more difficult to do basic things, but would not trade it for anything.

Alexa now weighs about 2 1/2 pounds and is a tad over 15 inches long from head to heel. Her muscles and lungs are continuing to mature, and her head is growing bigger to make room for her developing brain

This weekend we are taking a quick over night visit to see Jayson, Leah & JB in Kentucky. We are riding with Bill, which will be a big help to both of us. I will not have to do any of the driving & will have a lot of room to spread out in the car. This visit is really important to Justin & I am glad we are able to do it. Justin will also be starting postal school on Monday. Well that sums up are week!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Third Trimester/ 28 weeks!

We are finally into the last trimester. The third trimester is usually the shortest trimester, which makes me very excited. Once we hit September 9th we are considered full term & can deliver anytime up to October 10th before we discuss induction. Kind of scary to think that is only 2 months away.

We had our 28 week appointment yesterday. I gained another 3lbs... this is really starting to get old. The doctor's say I am still in a healthy range, so I guess there should be no worries from me. My blood pressure was still a little high, but lower then what it's been. I also had the glucose test. This ended up being no big deal. The worst part was having to wait an hour to get my blood drawn. The doctor's office will call me if the test comes back irregular (which I am guessing will not be the case). Alexa had a strong 154 heart beat & my belly is measuring right on schedule in size. We go back on July 21st for our next check up.

This past week ended our crazy schedule. We had an amazing time in Cincinnati. The family baby shower was awesome. I was so happy to see everyone having a good time. Alexa got a bunch of adorable outfits and a lot of the big items on our registry. As soon as we made it home, Justin started putting the nursery furniture together. It all looks great so far. We still have to pick up the rest of our gifts from Greenville & then we will be ready to actually decorate her room. Hopefully we will be doing this over the next few weeks.

Alexa should be around 2 and a quarter pounds & 14.8 inches in length. She can blink her eyes, which now sport lashes. With her eyesight developing, she may be able to see the light that filters in through my womb. She's also developing billions of neurons in her brain and adding more body fat in preparation for life in the outside world.

This week we are looking forward to getting back into our routine at home & starting our hospital birthing class. (OK well one of us is looking forward to the class)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

27 Weeks

13 more weeks until our due date- 10 weeks till full term!

Justin & I drove to Orlando last Friday. We had an amazing 3 days alone. On Sunday we packed up & drove to the other side Orlando & stayed with the Cox family for another few days. We really enjoyed all the parks. I was able to enjoy most of what Disney had to offer, but did have to sit out of a few rides. On Thursday we drove home & then drove up to Cincinnati for our family baby shower.

Alexa should be over the 2lb marker & be about 14 1/2 inches long. Her brain is fully developed & very active at 27 weeks. Her lungs are continuing to mature & she should be gaining weight very rapidly for the next few weeks.

This weekend my Mom, Beth & Mary (Steve's Mom) are throwing Megan & I a family baby shower. I feel so lucky to have such a great family. Alexa will be born into a family fully ready to spoil her.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

26 Weeks!

Finally a week with great news. Alexa's doctors appointment started out with the usual routine & then we were given an ultrasound. I love being able to actually see our daughter. She continues to look great to the doctors. She weighed in at 1lb 15 ounces. All of her measurements were right on schedules or a little ahead. Her femur bone was measuring in the 70th percent tile! The doctor checked it a few times just to make sure. When the doctor did the final over all percent tile he took out the femur measurement. He said that one long bone cant really give an accurate result. So she is currently in the 48th percent tile & in the 60th percent tile if you include her legs. I am not sure where she got her long legs from, but we'll take it.

The doctor continued by checking on me. My cervix has not shortened anymore & that's a good thing. He feels confident that we are in a safer place now. I am allowed to do "moderate activity" for the time being. He said this is basic walking for up to an hour a day. I still need to be very careful with the heat & not to lift anything. He wants to continue to see me regularly. I go back in 2 weeks for the glucose test.

I will not have many details on Alexa's weekly development from here on out. A baby born at 26 weeks has about an 80% chance of survival. This is sooo exciting. This also means that most of the crucial development stages are behind us. During the last 14 weeks of pregnancy her organs will be maturing and she will be gaining weight. So keep it up Alexa!

This past week Justin & I traveled to Delaware/ Pennsylvania for his cousins wedding. We all had a great time. At one point my feet were swelling & I felt like shrek. I made sure to have all my fluids & did little activity. I did have 3 opportunities to swim. I love swimming when I am pregnant. It is an amazing feeling to not have any weight on my back. It seems like just a few weeks ago I was writing about people asking me if I was pregnant. Well this week I had someone ask me if I was "ready to pop?" As shocked as I was to be asked this, it was still exciting that I look that pregnant. So we are now taking the green dress out of the wardrobe... I believe she was actually embarrassed when I told her I have 3 more months.. LOL! I should have been a little more prepared for this comment after hearing I put on 2.5lbs this last week. (16 in total)

Justin & I are heading to Orlando tomorrow. We will be spending the weekend alone before the Cox family joins us on Sunday. I am looking forward to Seaworld & It's a Small World. I have a list of things I can & cannot ride, lets just say that one list is a lot longer. We will be back in Columbia next Thursday.

11 Weeks until full term & 14 weeks until our due date!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

25 Weeks Down... 15 to go

But only 12 Weeks until we hit full term. Yes, I am officially starting the count down. Alexa's chance of survival is up to 50% if she were to be born this week. She should be measuring around 13.5 inches long and weighs around a pound and a half. Around week 25, the structures of her spine are starting to form, including 33 vertebrae (rings of bone), 150 joints, and 1,000 ligaments. These structures will eventually support her body weight. Alexa's capillaries are also forming this week. Capillaries are the tiny blood vessels that move blood from the heart to tissues in the body. By the end of week 25, air sacs and blood vessels in her lungs will develop, getting her ready for her first breath.

Bedrest was very challenging for me this time. I had to skip on vacation bible school, work, cooking & really everything I enjoy in life. Of course it was what was best for Alexa, so I took it very seriously. She has continued to be very active, but lets me sleep at night.

On Wednesday we meet with the new doctor. I was very nervous going into this appointment. I was afraid that he would not be a good fit for us, that something could be wrong with Alexa and really a bunch of irrational fears. The nurse who took us back was really nice. We did the usual weigh in (105.8) and basic questions. She did an entire history on us & did the whole "Welcome" speech. After waiting a really long time for the doctor, he finally came in. Within the first 30 seconds I knew were were at the right place. He was very personable, very detailed & kept the entire appointment enjoyable.

He checked my cervix, which was still closed. We discussed the last few weeks in very close detail & he seemed to ease our worries. He said the protein test that was ran on Sunday was a huge indicator that I am not currently in preterm. He said the contractions may or may not be something to be concerned with. It can vary from one extreme to the next between people. He also believes the shortening is a very relative term. He was on the same page with the hospital when it came to having multiple people performing the test. The results cannot be compared unless its the same tech, same time of the day & the bladder is at the same level of fullness.

He did determine that I do not need to be on full bedrest for now. That was the best news I could have heard. He still insists that I take it very easy. I am allowed to do my normal activities but no extras. I cannot work out, lift anything over a few pounds or push any limits. He does not want me outside except walking to my car. His concern is the heat & dehydration. He said even if you are full hydrated, the 100* temperatures can cause problems. I am also suppose to add between 8 & 10 ounces of Gatorade to my already 4 bottles of water & 2 glasses of milk liquid in take each day. The Gatorade has electrolytes which will help with the stomach cramping.

I will be going back on Wednesday at 9am to get an internal ultrasound done & to monitor the preterm symptoms.

Justin & I will be heading to Delaware for his cousin's wedding this weekend. I will have to make sure I stay very hydrated, take frequent stops to walk & plenty of rest. Looking forward to a relaxing few days!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

No more medicine!

I want to apologize to anyone who will be hearing about this for the first time while reading this. Justin and I are doing our best to keep people informed. Feel free to call either one of us for additional information.

I started taking the turbutaline on Friday morning. I was told this would cause shakiness, jittery feelings & an increase heart rate. Through out the day on Friday I had just that. I did my best to stay hydrated & limit my activities. On Saturday morning I woke up feeling very weak with a new symptom of chest pain. I spent most of the day trying not to focus on it & stay as positive as I could. By 8pm I was having so much pain that I decide I was not going to take my next dosage of medicine and see if that helps. I ended up skipping the midnight, 4am & 8am medicines because of the nausea that started. I woke up Sunday morning very dizzy & vomiting. We made it to church & felt alright for about 2 hours. I had to leave the service about 10 minutes early and we decided to call the on-call physician. He advised me to go to the the labor & delivery unit in the hospital.

We arrived at the hospital at noon. I was hooked up to a contraction monitor & heart rate monitor for Alexa. My blood pressure was taken every 15 minutes, which was high & my pulse was continually between 105-115 (high). My contractions were very minor but fairly regulatory. I was put on an IV dip for the entire time I was there. The cardiologist came in and ordered an EKG & Echo... all of which came back normal. He said I have a great looking heart. He also advised me that under no circumstance am I ever to be put on this medicine again. My heart is very "efficient" and cannot properly function under this medicine.

The OB doctor had a lot of blood work done, all of which came back normal. I was also given a test that determined I was not currently in preterm labor. My cervix is still closed. So we had really good news after 7 long hours. Basically my heart is good & I am not in labor. But, I was told I needed to see a high risk doctor & that I need to be on bedrest until I have my appointment.

I am now setting up camp in the bed & will remain here for an unknown amount of time. I will call a few new doctor's tomorrow and attempt to get in sometime this week.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

24 Weeks!

This last week once again went by quickly. We spent the weekend in Greenville with Justin's family. Donna wanted to take family pictures in football jerseys. Of course I was the only one in a Bengal's jersey, but I know next time Alexa will match me. Justin had a great time with his brothers, which he always does. Monday started a crazy week for both Justin & I. Justin spent 3 days in the field simulating what he would really be doing in Army once all his training is completed. He kept busy & enjoyed what he was doing. I really think he enjoys all the computer work & delegation involved in his job. He was unfortunate with his sleep schedule. He was given the 6am- 2pm shift. This really messed up his schedule. He was not able to sleep at all the last day & came home very tired. He took a 4 hour nap & then slept 10 hours that night. He still does not feel back to normal. I took Bengal & Carson to Cincinnati. I am very happy that I-40 is open & it made the trip less than 8 hours each way. When I arrived home on Tuesday I was very exhausted. Wednesday I went back to work & feel good to be back into the swing on things.

Alexa continues to grow more proportional each and every day. During pregnancy week 24 her organ systems continue to mature as do the central nervous system, digestive system and even reproductive and circulatory systems. Your baby's lungs are also starting to form little branches and will eventually start producing a substance called surfactant, which prevents her lungs from sticking together and helps the baby to breathe after birth. Alexa's survival rate is about 39% if she were to be born this week. Still way to early, but getting closer every day.

I started this blog yesterday & am continuing it today to include the most recent doctors visit. Everything started out like the typical appointment. I was weighted in at 105.4lbs & had a normal range blood pressure reading. We were then given an ultra sound. Alexa was kicking up a storm. She continually bounced around & put on a good show for us. She really looks like her Daddy. I was then taken to see the doctor. We talked about the braxton hicks contractions that I have been experiencing for 8 weeks. She wanted to make sure the cervix was not shortening. So I was sent back to the ultra sound tech where they measured my cervix at 2.79, which is was indeed shorter than the 3.2 I was measured at previously. I was then hooked up to the contraction monitor for about 30 minutes. I was not having an contactions but there was uterine irritations. They prescribed terbutaline sulfate to hopefully relax the uterus. I was told to take it easy. This means no extra anything, including walking. I can still continue with work & our normal plans... but nothing extra. I will go back on Thursday to be measured again. (6 days)

That's about it for now.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Another week down...23 Weeks today!

This is the first time I can say that a week has gone by quickly. This week was also the first time that someone who did not know I was pregnant asked if I was. It may have something to do with me rubbing my belly all the time or that I am actually really showing. I enjoy being asked if I am pregnant or when I am due. But the follow up question is ALWAYS, how old are you? I am glad they are asking, so I can proudly say that I will be 23 next month, instead of them thinking I am 16 or 17. If I can tell I am getting stared at, but they are uncomfortable asking then I make a comment about my husband & they stop looking so judgmental towards me.. :) Overall, I enjoy looking pregnant & love talking to people about it.

This week we enjoyed the rest of our trip to the beach & all 5 of us made it home safely. We shopped at the Tanger outlets in Charleston, Justin had fun buying Alexa some clothes. It's the first time that we personally have bought anything new for her. Justin found her a few Christmas outfits & a half dozen or so pants sets. Alexa's dresser arrived this week. Justin and I have both been to exhausted to even think about putting it together. So it will get pushed off for a few weeks.

Alexa's growth this week is very similar to last week. She should still be around 11 inches and about a pound in weight. If we could look into the womb we would see that she looks very much like a newborn baby, just much smaller. Some say they look like small dolls at this stage. She should also be able to hear noises from outside of my body. She is currently very active & you can feel & watch her move through my clothes.

The most exciting thing about week 23 is that she now has a chance of survival if she were to be born early. Of course our goal is full term, but this does not always happen. Fetal survival rate is around 17% if born at 23 weeks. Yes I am very aware on how small of a percent that is. But it is a real reminder that I have a little human growing inside of me. I cannot believe that she has the capability of surviving outside of my body already. But lets all keep praying for another 3 1/2 more months of healthy pregnancy, then we can start wishing her out.

This week we will be traveling to Greenville to see Brandon graduate from high school & then celebrate with a party. On Monday I will be taking our furry children to Cincinnati to spend a month with their Grandma. Actually, my mother has agreed to watch them for a month while Justin & I will be traveling. They tend to do better being in one place instead of being carried around from house to house. Over the next 4 1/2 weeks Justin & I will spend a total of 9 nights at our apartment & the rest of the time we will be out taking on the world. Oh the joys of summer!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

22 Weeks!

This was a great week for Alexa & I. We are enjoying our memorial day trip to Charleston with Daddy, Aunt Megan, Uncle Steve, and Grandma Sandy. Everyone is sunburnt! Steve and Justin have it the worst. But we are all enjoying the beach and getting a chance to relax.

Alexa this week is about 11 inches long and about 1 pound. She looks more like a miniature newborn, her eyelids, lips, and eyebrows are becoming more distinct, and her teeth are beginning to form.

The crib arrived this week. It is still sitting in its box & may stay that way for awhile. I want to put it together, but we do not have the bedding yet. For now, it may be better just to in vision it. We are still waiting on the dresser. Hopefully it will arrive soon.

This week we are looking forward to the rest of our Charleston vacation & Brandon's High School graduation. Only 18 more weeks (Still not counting down).

Thursday, May 20, 2010

21 Weeks!

Finally to the point where we are closer to the finish line then where we started. But I am not going to start counting down yet!

Little Alexa will start a very rapid growth spurt this week which will continue over the next month. She is expected to put on an ounce and a half each week. Though her length will not make as a dramatic change, this extra weight will start putting meat on her bones. Her eyes should be starting a more regular REM (Rapid eye movement) cycles which will teach her sleep cycles. Her very red skin is still translucent, but she has some time to work on that.

I still don't really feel like I am showing. I can clearly see a change in my stomach, but its not more than just excess belly fat to me. The uterus should now be positioned about a 1/2 inch above the belly button. I have put on over 10lbs, but not exactly sure on the weight gain from last week. I stopped weighing myself every day & will just leave that up to the doctors.

Mom, Dad & Beth purchased our nursery furniture. We decided on a sleigh crib, 5 drawer dresser & separate changing table. The crib will be converted into a toddler bed until we decide to have baby #2 (side note: we are wanting them about 3 years apart in age). The changing table will be arriving sometime this week, the crib sometime next week & the dresser will be here in June. I am very excited to start assembling her nursery.

On Sunday, Justin and I attended an 'Oh Baby conference. There were educational sessions as well as vendor tables. We registered to win a bunch of things & ended up with a diaper cake and baby hat. The diaper cake has at least 100 diapers in it, a baby outfit, and a bunch of breast feeding items. We are still very much considering using cloth diapers while we are home with her. I have been doing a lot of research & feel that they can be good for not only the environment but also save us some money. Of course we will be using disposable when we travel or are out of the house foe the day.

That is about it for now. This week we will be starting on putting the nursery furniture together, finalizing all of our summer plans & hopefully enjoying this beautiful weather.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Half way there! (Week 20)

I am very excited to hit this mile stone. I cannot believe I am already half way there. It is not going fast at all, but its still an amazing week. Since my fall last week things have been getting better. I am walking with out my crutches & the pain is minimal. I am trying to be more careful when I walk. I will be sticking to gym shoes or flip flops from here on out. I went to the gym and did my normal arm exercises and the elliptical with no resistance. It feels good to get back into my routine.

Sleeping has been the biggest difference over the last few weeks. I have always been a belly sleeper & that is become much harder to do. Laying on your sides is the best option when you are pregnant, but I tend to only sleep 2-3 hours at a time. I usually role around for awhile & then make it back to sleep. I am open to any suggestions!

Today was the anatomy ultra sound. She weighted in at 12 ounces. This is surprisingly a very average size baby. She is measuring even a little large for a girl. It makes me excited to think she got a little bit of her Daddy's height. They were able to find all of her organs & all 10 fingers and toes. She was laying face down in the fetal position. We did not get a great face shot or profile picture. But it was neat to watch her kick and rub her eyes. She seems so much bigger than 4 weeks ago. The ultra sound tech was not able to get all the shots of the heart that she needed, so we have another one in 4 more weeks. I have become very spoiled with these ultra sounds. Our next appointment is June 10th.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Ohh Miss Alexa- 19 Weeks!

As most of you know, my knees and ankles have always been trouble for me. Yesterday I was walking in the parking lot outside of our apartment and my wonderful right ankle gave out. I fell on my right ankle and lower leg & somehow injured my femur/ hip area. Justin took me on post to get checked out. The baby has had a strong heart beat since the fall & has not given us any reason to be concerned. I did not fall on my belly, so she should not be effected by this. The leg pain was hard to diagnose because of the pregnancy. Though the radiation may only have a small impact on her, it was not something I wanted to risk. Because my pain is in the upper leg, there was no way of covering my belly during an x-ray. We called Jay & the doctors agreed the best option was to wait 3 days. During this time the pain will either subside or will get increasingly worse. Of course we are hoping it will subside. This allows the doctors to have a better idea on how to treat my leg. So far the pain is still strong, but the swelling is going down. I will be rotating between the bed & the couch for 3 days (2 left).

A dear friend of ours from church brought me dinner and stayed the night. She made sure I stayed off my feet and kept ice on my leg. Justin had his first staff duty at Fort Jackson and therefore could not be here with me. He will be home tonight and will be able to take care of us.

Little Alexa should be about 7 ounces and 6 inches from head to butt. She is getting big! I feel her kicking more and more every day. This weekend I am looking forward to Mother's day and my new perspective on it.

Thanks for all the prayers!