Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Our Little Glow Worm



Hutton came off the oxygen yesterday and is doing great! In the afternoon they also started him on his bili blanket and now he is a little glow worm. We started breast feedings yesterday afternoon and the first two feedings he took one side and then got pooped out but the next two he took both sides like a champ. He was very alert yesterday afternoon so Grammy and Busha got to see his eyes; most of the time thought he just hangs out in is isolette and snoozes. It actually looks kinda divine...the snoozing.
I fed him at 9 pm last night and then skipped the midnight feeding so I could get some sleep. I hit the bed a little after 10, woke up once around 1 am to roll over and then didn't open my eyes until 3 am when I needed to be back upstairs. Sleep. It was awesome!
I will be discharged this afternoon. Collin is going to go into work and I'll be setting up camp in Hutt's room until he is able to go home. Plans are day-by-day at this point. Hutt will have his last dose of antibiotics tonight and then if his bili counts stay down he might be able to leave by the end of the week.
I'll probably post more this afternoon.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Good Morning, Baby Boy



When I lifted the blanket on his isolette and peeked inside this morning this is what I saw.

And then my heart melted.

Collin and I sat in on the NICU rounds this morning and things are looking good. In fact our nurse told us when she looked at his stats/labs this morning she was shocked because everything looked so good. He has lost a little weight and they are going to put him on the bili blanket today for precaution because his bilirubin was a little high, BUT! awesome news is they are going to try him off of oxygen today and also take his tube out of his throat. AND, I get to try breastfeeding for the first time at noon.

We'll keep you posted.

Monday, June 28, 2010

A Sneak Peek

I hesitated posting a picture because with Hutton in the NICU he has wires running everywhere. Most are just monitors. He does have an oxygen tube in his nose and a tube running down his throat to clear his stomach and make sure he doesn't get too much oxygen. Oh, and an IV in his hand. Since I never had my Strep B test they are treating him with antibiotics to be safe. The big white splint on his left hand is to keep the IV in place.

When I first walked in and saw him in the incubator full of wires I wanted to cry but the more I'm with him the more comfortable I'm becoming. I got to hold him for another 45 min. or so tonight and he actually started rooting and then he just nuzzled in.

I can't wait to get the wires off to get a good look at him and I'm hoping tomorrow we'll get to hold him more. For now, I'm heading to bed - hopefully we'll have more pictures to share tomorrow.

Thank you, everyone, for all the good thoughts and prayers!

Family of Four

It's a Boy!!!
Collin and I are excited to announce the arrival of our son
Hutton Andrew Konopacki
7:07 am
Monday June 28, 2010
5 lbs 10 oz
18 inches
Mama and Baby are doing well. Because he was early Hutton is in the NICU being monitored but we've been able to see him and I just got done with an hour and a half of "kangaroo care" (holding him chest to chest). He doesn't have quite as much hair as his brother but I think he looks similar. I left my camera in his room but will post a picture and more details as soon as I can.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Breakfast on the Farm

I can't believe it has taken me an entire week to finish this post, I uploaded pictures last Saturday afternoon, but this week has just gotten the best of me - a night of nesting, a night of solo parenting and a couple nights of feeling like absolute crap and well, here we are, one week later.

***

A year or so ago my cousins (from Milwaukee) were coming up to visit and on their way they called for directions. As Collin was helping them out Andrea stopped mid sentence to exclaim "Look kids! Cows!"

One of the first times I took Collin down to my parents we got off the interstate and started weaving in and out of all the farms on the back roads into town and he asked me, "where are all the cows?"

I explained to Collin that the farming done down by my parents is more corn and soybeans, less dairy, and we giggle as we exclaim "Look kids! Cows!" as we pass by a pasture, but the truth is it's easy to get wrapped up in the daily rigors of life, to pass by a barn and silo without giving thought to the fact that farming is a backbone of the economy in Wisconsin.

I grew up in town so I don't know alot about farming in general, but I hope I can instill an appreciation for it in my children. After all, it's the hard work of all our farms and farmers that make this state so great.

So, last weekend, in honor of June Dairy Month we woke up early, met up with my friend Tanya and her boys, and headed out to Portage County's Breakfast on the Farm.


I was totally unprepared for how big of an event this was going to be. As we took the exit ramp off the highway there was a sign pointing us to the South, we circled the bend and came upon the farmhouse with red barns and many silos. Just beyond the house was a huge tent and parking galore. And it was packed. It was really pretty awesome to see this many people come out to support the industry.

We started our morning eating breakfast on hay bails - pancakes, eggs, sausage, and cheese curds (yes, we're in Wisconsin!). Then we moseyed over to the next tent where there were lots of informational stands set up and free books for the kids.

And then it was on to the cows.

This little guy was calm as all the kids touched and pet him. Keaton couldn't quite reach but that didn't stop him from getting excited and pointing out the cow to Da Da.

Collin then took the boys through a milking barn (Tanya and I were stuck outside with strollers) where they showed the kids the different stations and the twice daily milking routine.
In the next barn the cows were grazing and I was unable to get a good picture but one of them kept coming right up to the gate to moo at the kids. He'd stick his long neck out, pucker his lips and let out a low grunting mooooo. Keaton wasn't quite picking up the moo sound until he heard this cow and then I think it all clicked for him. A cow says mooooo.

After the cows we went to look at the tractors. Because Collin's riding lawn mower looks like the tractor in his picture book, Keats calls all tractors "Da Da." As we came up on them he started pointing away and exclaiming Da Da, Da Da. He was thrilled to climb up on the big 'ol tractor.



Our last morning adventure was taking a hayride through the pasture. I should have taken some pictures of the land itself, it was breathtaking out there - rolling hills covered in lush green grass. To be quite honest with you I didn't want that hayride to end.




Keaton was taking in the sights and pointing at everything as we chatted and then, almost in an instant, his head bobbed to the left and he was out.

We finished the morning with ice cream sundaes before heading home for a family nap where I think we all dreamed about cows and a life on the farm.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Laid Up

I'm not sure what time it was because our clock has been mysteriously set 1 hour and 20 odd minutes fast for the past week, but my guess is somewhere between midnight and 1 am, when I was awoken from a dead sleep, sitting bolt upright in bed, puking in my mouth once before swinging my feet onto the floor. I tried to run but my pinched sciatic made me a hobbling mess, thankfully I made it to the bathroom just in time to fling myself over the sink. As soon as the first wretched episode was over there were tears streaming down my flushed face and I was shaking, shivering, unable to hold my body still. The mess was more than the sink could handle so I moved over to the toilet as I felt the next purge coming. But the pinched nerve, it wouldn't allow me to get to my knees so I just kinda half-assed bent over and took my best aim. There were at least three or four more episodes. Violent is the only way I can describe them. I puked alot during the first trimester of this pregnancy, none of those times even came close to this. I was choking on my own spit and unable to form a sentence. "Paper towels" was all I could get out as Collin asked what I wanted him to do.

As he cleaned up the mess in our bathroom I moved over to the one in the hallway. Shaking I hung my head over the sink. Every time I went to the bathroom I was fully expecting to see blood. I sat there wondering, what the hell is this? Am I going into labor?

Earlier in the day my mom and I had been shopping - the day was relatively "normal" for me, lots of Braxton Hicks, many painful, except for the low back pain. That was new. By the time I went to bed the pain in my lower back was more than I could handle. When I woke up the pain was gone, but in it's place was the pinched nerve. A very, very pinched nerve. A pinched nerve that left me almost unable to walk.

When it seemed the vomiting had ceased I made my way back to bed but every time I laid down the urge to puke came back. So I spent the rest of the night sitting up in bed, shaking, burning up from a fever, and wondering if I should call the doctor.

This morning when I woke up I felt better, but not great. I called into work and then placed a call into the doctor's office. The nurse first thought maybe a kidney stone, but ruled that out when I said I had no burning when I used the bathroom. Then she asked if maybe the intense pain from my back caused the vomiting? I guess it is possible. For now I'm laid up in bed, instructed to do kick counts (10 in two hours) and alternate between hot and cold for the scatia.

My mom's here watching Keaton and cooking my lunch as I type. After this next round with the heating pad I might go start some laundry because the only coherent thought I had through all of this last night was: I can't go into labor tonight, I don't have the baby's going home clothes washed yet!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Soul in the Season: Summer 2010

I'm going to tell you something and after you read it some of you will question how we can be friends.

I don't love summer.

In fact, there are some years that I'd say I don't even like summer.

It's humid and I'm sticky and my hair is frizzy and I hate wearing shorts so I'm usually overheated. But that's not even the thing that gets me the most. The reason I usually dread summer is because our schedule is typically so busy that between the months of June and August we're lucky if we have 2 or 3 weekends open. The constant traveling and plans (though I'm usually the one that makes them) wears me out. For the past few years I have to admit, I kinda dread this season.

It's too bad really, as I sit here typing this my Mom is putting Keaton to bed, Collin is resting next to me and the dog is sleeping on the floor and it is quiet in the living room. The only sound I hear are the wind chimes signing a tune outside. It's simple things like wind chimes blowing in the breeze, fresh watermelon cut up on the table, and the warmth of the sun on your arms as you lounge outside reading a book that make summer so spectacular. It's the simple things that I tend to forget about (or take for granted) as we bustle from one engagement to the next.

This year is different though, because of the new baby our schedule is pretty wide open for the next couple of months and for once I'm actually looking forward to this season. I know we'll still be busy but this year I want to make an effort to enjoy the little things that make summer so special.

  • Eat an ice cream cone and let Keaton have his first very own cone.
  • Have a bonfire and make s'mores.
  • Go blueberry picking.
  • Spend an afternoon at the beach.
  • Make a conscious effort to buy produce locally at the various Farmer's Markets.
  • Have a cookout and use the outdoor serving set we got for our wedding.
  • Make cheeseburgers from scratch. Also make a summer dessert.
  • Celebrate the 4th of July with a parade and fireworks.

*****************

I like ice cream, but when we stop for a treat I tend to get some sort of flurry or ice cream in a dish. I'm not sure why because when I eat ice cream on a cone I'm instantly taken back to the summers of my youth. There is something really awesome about eating ice cream this way and I'm looking forward introducing Keaton to the novelty.

We live 0.9 miles from a blueberry patch....farm...what would you call it? Blueberry picking place. For the past three years I've been meaning to get down there and for the past three years the season has come and gone and I have yet to pick blueberries. This year I'm doing it.

I was hoping to plant a garden this year, but with June halfway over and the next few weekends not looking promising to be able to get it in I'm afraid it isn't going to happen. If I can't grow my own veggies then I'm going to make a conscious effort to not buy produce at the grocery store for the season. One of the awesome things about where we live is that we have Farmer's Markets galore at our disposal. Every single day downtown the market is open and on weekends the little square is pretty full. Between that and the Co-op, which also sells local goods, this shouldn't be too difficult, it will just take a little more planning on my part.

Five years ago as Collin and I were registering for wedding gifts I insisted on registering for this set of outdoor serve ware. Plates, glasses, bowls, etc, etc, we have it all. Collin thought I was nuts, we'd never use it, but I assured him that we would. EVERYONE needs serve ware for their cookouts. Turns out in five years the set has not once seen the light of day. That is going to change this summer!

What things do you want to do this year to make the season special?

Friday, June 11, 2010

32 Weeks




* Yesterday I hit the 32-week mark. I swear it was just yesterday I was telling you I was 30 weeks. Hell, it doesn't even feel like it was that long ago that I was telling you I was 32 weeks with Keaton.

* As soon as the calendar turned to June it was like some sort of alarm went off in my body signaling panic! panic! panic! this baby is coming soon and you have 8 million and 1 things to do! Get moving woman!

* So I started a list.

Things to do before baby arrives: * clean closet * re-arrange room * fix battery on pump * get water tested * set up bassinet *wash baby clothes *purchase stroller accessories * make baby announcement list * make baptism guest list * get Keaton's haircut * order Keat's gift from baby * curtains for our bedroom * get Keaton a big brother t-shirt

* One thing you'll notice is NOT on this list is * paint bedroom. And yet, that's the priority for this weekend. Why? Because I'm in nesting mode and something snapped and OMG that bedroom needs to be painted NOW! Also, we need a new bed. Nesting is expensive, man.

* Not only am I nesting, I'm also moody. Today I ran into the toy store in town to get Keat's gift from the baby and the lady asked me when I was due. My usual answer these days is "August 5th, but it can come sooner if it wants." She kinda laughed and snorted, "yeah, keep dreaming honey." I wanted to snap "Hey Be-otch, it is actually possible this baby MIGHT come early, so lay the eff off." I refrained though and instead gave a little smile and said, yeah, I know.

* I'm also hormonal. Yesterday we went to the Special Olympics Torch Run (The State of WI S.O. is held here in town each year and it is really pretty awesome; law enforcement from all over the state are involved in the torch run. My brother usually does a leg up north and the broth of a friend of mine did this final leg into town so we went out to see it.) It was very emotional for me. First tears sprung to my eyes as we lined up on the street and I saw all those there to watch and I prayed to God if our child has a disability please give us the strength to handle it and please let people be accepting. Then when I saw all the athletes in the float tears came again; they were so happy and so proud and it was so heartwarming. And lastly the tears came because all these police cars! They are from all over the state! And here's where you hear a screeching record and ask yourself WHAT? Yes, police cars made me cry. Don't give me that look. It was emotional moment, those police cars!

* So back to the new bed thing. Yeah. I can't handle our bed anymore, it is not comfortable even with the gazillion pillows I have on it. On Wednesday night I slept in our spare bedroom downstairs because I was whimpering as I laid down that night my hips/back hurt so bad. So I'm done, I call uncle, we need a new bed.

* Otherwise I don't have too many complaints. I mean I'm achey and waddling, and my ankles are still swelling, but those are all normal things. Now that we are done traveling I feel like a huge weight is off of my shoulders wondering if I'm going to go into labor early - while also out of town.

* Oh, re-reading that post from Keaton's pregnancy reminds me, what is with this 3rd trimester nauseousness?? I again feel like I have a ball of vomit sitting in my throat. One time this week I actually thought I was going to puke at my desk at work. And many times I've sat up in bed fully expecting to spew all over the floor. It's not really fun.

* So, appointment on Wednesday....pretty routine. As doc said, we're operating on auto-pilot now as long as I'm not bleeding or leaking an fluid.

* Heart rate was in the upper 140's: 147 - 150

* I'm still measuring 2 weeks ahead.

* I asked about the sensation that I'm going to pee practically every time I walk. Since I just had a urine culture and am not having any burning he doesn't think it's an infection, but pressure from the babe.

* I think the babe is sitting more straight up and down now (versus my last apt where it's back was over to the left) - I'm just basing this off of where he felt it, where he found the heartbeat, and where I'm not feeling hiccups.

* He asked if I had any other questions and I said Nope! And we left. And then on our way out I looked at Collin and said, shit! I had questions! I do this every time!

* Braxton Hicks are still coming good and strong. When I have really good ones sometimes I just look at Collin and say, okay, don't talk right now, I'm contracting. Man, I'm a pleasure to be around!!

* Okay, I'm out. Have a good weekend!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Signs of Summer

There are some things...

that need no words.

Images alone...

simply say...

Summer.

One of those things...

for me...

is drinking water...

straight...

from...

the hose.


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Spring Soul Season in Review

I don't know about you, but for me summer begins with Memorial Day weekend. Especially this year; we were Up North with high 80 degree weather, the beaches were full of kids and umbrellas, the dogs needed to swim to cool off, and we cooked a number of meals on the grill. This Memorial Day weekend felt more like the middle of July than the end of May. So yes, in my mind we have transitioned to summer, which makes me think it would be a good time to review my Spring Soul Season list.

This is the third season I've made a list of things I want to do, things I hope will refresh my soul. I've found it to be a good exercise even if I don't accomplish everything on the list.

Spring 2010 in Review:

1) Take Keaton to see the Easter Bunny and color Easter eggs. We did both. I wrote about them here and here.

2) Plant an herb garden (and possibly our vegetable garden, though this might fall into my summer list). I planted my herb garden on May Day. We haven't had time to get the vegetable garden in yet but I'm hoping that will happen in the next few weekends. I'm happy to report that so far the herb garden is doing okay. My cilantro and chives are doing the best (which is perfect, those are the two I wanted the most!) and we have a few sprouts of basil and parsley coming up too. I took this picture about 10 minutes ago.


3) Spring cleaning project: sort, organize, and clean our closet and dresser. Spring cleaning, although a chore, seems so refreshing during this time of year. Dare I say it is actually kinda fun to rid myself of clutter and items I don't use; to make things tidy and clean. That being said, I didn't finish this whole project. My dresser is complete and about 1/2 of my side of the closet has been sorted and organized. We still have some work to do and I think this task will be moving over to the "things to get done before the baby comes" list - but it has been started and even knowing that makes me feel a little better.

4) Take Keaton to the zoo. We took our zoo trip on Mother's Day. Because I forgot my camera I still haven't written a post about it. All the pictures are on my parent's camera and my mom has been too busy wrapping up her school year to upload them. I'm hoping I'll have them soon and then, even though it will be late, I'll write a post about the day.

5) Buy tulips for the kitchen table. I did buy tulips and proof of them is right here in this picture.

See way over there on the left hand side?? I screwed up though and didn't buy these until May. I should have bought them closer to Easter time because I'm gonna be honest, they weren't the prettiest of flowers. I tried taking a picture of them alone but, ehh, not so pretty flowers make not so pretty pictures. I enjoyed them while they were here; I just tried not to look too close :)

6) Make a carrot cake from scratch. This is an item that hasn't been completed, but also one that I'm not scratching off the list just because the season is over. I still intend to make this cake. The whole reason this was on the list in the first place is because sometime in early March I was cleaning out the pantry when Collin walked in and took a look at the ever-growing garbage pile. In it there was a boxed carrot cake and he immediately declared "you are not throwing that away." Carrot cake is his favorite. I put it back on the shelf but I just couldn't get over the fact that the expiration date was 2007! I put it back in the pile and promised him not only would I make him a cake, but I'd make it from scratch. AND it would be his birthday cake. His birthday, however, fell on a Thursday. The weekend before was Mother's Day and we were in Milwaukee. The Wednesday before we were at the Braves/Brewers game and the morning of his birthday he left for the cabin for 4 days. There was just never an ideal time around his birthday to get the cake made. And unfortunately May never really slowed down for us so I still have yet to make his cake. I am going to do this though, and I'll fill you in on the results when I do.
7) Help Collin clean up the flower beds and lawn. I can't say I've done a ton of weeding, but I think I have done more than in past years. I also spent a morning plant shopping with Busha where I bought a bunch of hanging baskets and I just love how the yard is colorful and cheery now.
I think that's a wrap. Sitting here tonight, on my normal Keatsday in which I had to be in the office to hit deadlines this week, I feel drained. It's times like these that reflecting on and thinking about what fills your soul are so important. Looking back at Spring 2010 I realize this was a really good season. One I enjoyed very much.
I'm currently working on my summer list; there are lots of things floating around in my head but nothing has gone on paper yet. That post will be coming soon.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Pooper Scooper

Around mid-April my mom and I took a trip to the mall to pick up a few summer items I had on my list: new shoes for Keaton, maternity t-shirts for me, and a canopy for our wagon. The canopy was at Toys-R-Us and of course I could not walk in there pick up my item and walk out, oh, no, no, no, that would be like a crime of some sort. We browsed the attached Babies-R-Us first, picking up a few gifts and some summer clothes before heading over to the toys. We must have hit the jackpot in terms of timing because so many things were on their pre-summer sale. Since Keats was still just a baby last summer we really didn't have many outdoor toys for him so I picked up a few things: sandbox toys, bubble lawnmower, and a new baseball tee and bat set. I was so pumped to get home and show him his new toys. Toys for OUTSIDE!!
When we go out now we always haul a toy or two into the lawn with us. He plays with them for awhile but inevitably his interest drifts elsewhere and he is off to find his own "toys": lawn tools, the outdoor broom, or the pooper scooper.
But, how can I blame him?
Pooper scooping is serious business..
but...

it's also....
alot...
of fun.

I guess.
Or, well, at least it appears that way.