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27 April 2009

Rub A Dub Dub, Dad and Baby in the Tub

Yesterday, Olivia's umbilical cord fell off and her dad and I decided that we would give her a real bath. Let me say, first, that she HATES sponge baths. She has had two since being home and she screamed her head off during each of them. The plus side to the baths is that she sleeps like a rock when she is done, so it makes it worth every scream and cry.

Just the beginning of the screamfest we call a sponge bath!

We were really hoping that the submersion bath would go better than the sponge baths and decided to have David get into the tub with Olivia to give her some extra security. And, Oh. My. Gosh! She loved it! Here are some great pictures we took. Oh, and she slept for a 4 1/2 hour stretch last night!!! I think every night might be bath night!

Check out the death grip on David's finger!

When David would push her farther away from him, she would get this look on her face, like, "Dad...don't do it!"

25 April 2009

Yes, It's MY Birthday, But There is Another Birth Day I'd Rather Blog About

As my mom fixed my birthday breakfast for me yesterday morning and I blew out my candles on my birthday biscuit, I realized that it wasn't so much ME who should be doing the celebrating as much as it should be my mom. It was 32 years ago that she was going through the pains of labor with me, and I am more appreciative of her now than ever.

I hope our Olivia remembers me on her birthdays, and for prosperity's sake, I'm going to detail the story of her birth.

*There are not too many gory details included, but it is fairly detailed. I apologize in advance (actually, no I don't!) if you don't want all of that info.

I started experiencing some minor cramping Tuesday night in the middle of the night, and the pain started becoming increasingly worse Wednesday evening. I was unable to sleep through each pain. I call them pains because everyone kept telling me that I would "know" when I was having contractions, and I didn't know if these were contractions or just pre-contraction cramping. They just felt like intense cramps. I kept my eye on the clock and saw that these pains were coming irregularly every five to seven minutes. I finally woke David up around 2 in the morning when the pains were coming every two minutes. We timed them and each pain lasted about 45 seconds and were coming about every five minutes pretty regularly. We called the doctor on call at the hospital and he recommended that we stay at home. By around 4 am, with a second call into the doctor, we headed off to the hospital. Unfortunately, I was only dilated to 1 1/2 cm and was sent home with an Ambien to help me sleep. I was able to sleep for about 3 1/2 hours without feeling any pain.

The rest of Thursday was spent trying to cope with the pain and take my mind off of it. Dave and I watched several shows on the laptop while I sat on the pilates ball. I got in the tub, walked around, got back on the pilates ball, sat in the chair backwards, and then eventually tried to get some rest. Around 10 pm, David and I realized that rest was not in our future without an Ambien. We headed back to the hospital and fortunately were able to stay since I was dilated to 4 cm.

We got moved into our room and I was hooked up to an IV. Olivia wasn't as responsive as the doctor's wanted to see after monitoring her and so they gave her some fluids. It really stunk being hooked up to the IV...and I'm pretty sure I told EVERYONE who came into the room how much it bothered me. When Dr Goodrich came in, I know I didn't say to her, "These contractions are bad." Instead, I complained about the IV. The unfortunate part about the IV wasn't just the fact that it hurt and was awkward in my arm, but that I had to be contained to the bed. Dr. Goodrich also gave me another Ambien thinking that it would help me get some much needed rest. Instead, I was tired and groggy, but still feeling the pain. At 5 cm and after my water had broken (around 3:30), I was able to get up and move around. Unfortunately, by that point, my focus was completely gone. I couldn't execute the relaxation techniques that we had practiced. I broke down and told David that I needed the epidural. He went to get our labor nurse and she checked me at 6 cm and went to get the anesthesiologist. A few minutes after she left, I felt the urge to push. I was so frightened. I was afraid that I was doing something I shouldn't do, and I begged for David to get our labor nurse.

She came back and I had dilated to 10 cm and was ready to push. We tried squatting next to the bed and then I got back into the bed and used the squat bar. I pushed for a little over an hour and at 6:03 am, Friday, April 17, our beautiful daughter, Olivia Cole Michelson, made her way into this world and was placed on my chest. I immediately fell in love.

After about an hour, my parents and Michele were brought into the room and were able to watch her get her first bath and get weighed and measured. What I then found out was that they had been waiting outside the room and were able to hear Olivia's first cry.

The entire labor process was pretty much a blur (minus the details from above). It was really, REALLY hard. I had the best coach possible and probably the most amazing labor nurse ever. David was absolutely amazing. He did everything right...he got ice water for me and chapstick, he got a wet wash cloth and put it on my forehead between contractions, he counted for me and pushed right along with me at the end.

Now, everyone says that you immediately forget about the pain of the childbirth the minute that your baby is placed on your chest. I won't say that. I won't even say that a little over a week later I have forgotten that pain. But, the memory of the pain has definitely lessened. I think because there are so many other pains that occur after labor, that it's not so easy to forget. But, I will say that it was worth it. Every. Single. Bit.

Here are a couple pictures from our short stay in the hospital.

22 April 2009

Do You See Why I Needed Lulu So Badly???!!!

I just wanted to post a couple pictures of Olivia striking a pose in her Lulu chair. I hope to find some time tomorrow to give a little update on how things are going.

20 April 2009

Welcome Olivia Cole Michelson

As you all can probably imagine, things in the Michelson household are extremely crazy right now, and by crazy, I mean BLISSFULLY, ECSTATICALLY AMAZING. And, yes, a little busy.

I hope to blog some more about the actual delivery, because in my opinion, it's a story that definitely needs telling/bragging about. With the help of David, who was absolutely the best coach anyone could ask for, I was able to give birth naturally without an epidural or any narcotics. It was extremely painful, but completely worth it.

So, the stats on Olivia are as follows:
Weight: 7 pounds, 10 oz (although at release time from the hospital, she was down 6 oz)
Height: 20 1/2 inches long
Apgar scores: 8 and 9 (YAY!!!)
Doctor's report: She is very healthy and could have been released the first day
Parent report: PERFECTION
Grandparent report: Always in need of holding

Here are a few more pictures to (hopefully) tide you over for awhile. Thanks again for all of the phone calls, emails and well wishes. We hope to talk to each of you soon!

The Michelson Family

16 April 2009

Know What Happened to the Blogger Who Cried Baby?

She got sent back home with an Ambien!

I am still in the early stages of labor. We are off to try and get some sleep and hopefully we'll have some news later today..,

I Hope You All Got a Better Night's Sleep Than We Did

Hi All,

It's about 4:15 am and we are off to the hospital. I've been pretty crampy all day long and they've grown in intensity and frequency (although, now that we have made the decision to leave, they are slowing down a bit). Hopefully the hospital won't send us home.

None of us here at the Michelson house, with the exception of Magnum, have slept tonight. When David and I finally decided to emerge from the cave that is our master suite, we discovered my parents up and waiting on us. As David described it, it was like we stayed out way to late and they were ready to bust us for partying too much. But, internet, partying never felt like this!

We'll keep you posted with texts and hopefully emails. Wish us luck.

Amanda, David and Peanut

12 April 2009

Let's All Welcome the Newest Addition to our Home!

No, it's not our baby girl. Unfortunately. While we were expecting an exciting weekend this weekend, I was hoping it was going to be in the form of contractions and labor pains. Instead, it came in the form of a Honda XR650L. Yes, my Evel Kneivel loving husband has purchased his very own motorcycle. And, he didn't stop there. He also has outfitted himself with a new (to him) helmet, jacket and pants. I'm 100x more grateful for the score of the protective gear than I am of the bike, but the fact that he comes back from a ride with a smile that stretches from ear to ear makes me very happy.

So, onto other weekend excitement....there is really nothing new to report on the baby front. Hopefully we'll have some action this week. My parents are here, so it's really nice knowing that they are here and ready should anything happen. We had a great day today at the local Farmer's Market, watching The Masters on tv and preparing for a delicious Easter dinner.
I'm posting my 9 months pregnancy pictures. And, since she couldn't wear this outfit today, she's wearing it on the outside.

10 April 2009

Quick Update

I had my weekly doctor's appointment this morning, and there's not a lot of exciting information to report. All of my labor-inducing strategies have bumped me up 1/2 cm in dilation from last week, so I am up to 1cm. WOO - only 9 more to go. So, at this rate, we'll be in labor in about 4 months.

I went to the gym after my doctor's appointment and walked for an hour. When David finishes up work here, we're going back to the gym to walk again. I realllly want to have her this weekend!

We'll keep you posted if anything exciting happens, like contractions, lost mucus plugs or a water breakage, so STAY TUNED!

09 April 2009

Bring on the Baby!

So, as most of you know, Sunday is our due date. MY plan, however, is for our baby girl to make her arrival tomorrow. My reason behind this is so that our weekend is spent in the hospital (and so we can possibly be home on Sunday to eat a magnificent honey-baked ham). David is only going to be able to take a few days off and my wish for him is that those days are spent at home with the new family instead of in the hospital helping me push our first-born out!

As a result, I have been trying just about anything and everything to encourage our daughter to make the descent down and out. Her unwillingness leads me to believe she is more of a Taurus than an Aries and worries me only slightly as to whether or not she'll be as stubborn as me or as stubborn as David. Neither is a good thing! Among the things I have tried (that I can mention here on this blog, that is) is walking, doing yoga moves, eating spicy foods, and eating balasmic vinegar on my salads. I'm off to the store to get the ingredients to a "labor salad" that I found online.

Apparently a restaurant had this salad on their menu and it had a 91% accuracy rate for inducing women into labor. A local radio station tried it and found success with 8 out of 10 of the women. So, I am fixing it for lunch AND dinner in the hopes that within 24 hours, we'll be having a baby. Keep your fingers crossed for us!

Oh, the recipe for labor salad? Here you go:

Romaine lettuce
Red Cabbage
Chopped Walnuts
Gorgonzola Cheese
Oil and Balsamic Vinegar

Eat and deliver!

06 April 2009

Lulu the Lamb Finally Found Her Home

Some of you may remember this post where I blogged about the various "cravings" I was having...and a certain Lulu the Lam Stuffed Chair that was pretty much out of my reach. The only Babystyle store was closing and only a few of the brick and mortar sores were still up and running. I found one, about 3 hours south, that had a Lulu and had begged my friend Michele to ask her boss to pick one up for me since it was very close to where he lived.

I swear, I bugged Michele every day for a week straight, and I kept getting the "Amanda, you need to chill out!" line in return. So, I tried to be the cool, laidback friend who wasn't ever-so-slightly obsessed with this stuffed chair. And, as a guessed it, they sold out of the chair by the time he went to pick it up.

I'll admit it, I was bummed. But, I think Michele was even more upset than I was. She really wanted to give Lulu to our Baby Girl. I checked and rechecked ebay, craigslist and the Babystyle website. And, you know what I learned? Persistency pays off! One day, a couple weeks ago, I noticed that the website had a new posting that said some of the inventory from the warehouse had been shipped to the remaining stores. So, I called up the store and found out that they had gotten a few more Lulus in. This time, I wasn't going to be laidback or cool. And, neither was Michele. She called up her boss and told him to get down to the babystyle store IMMEDIATELY. He promised he would get there before they closed that evening. He actually got there five minutes after it closed, but acted like a crazy man beating on the door until they let him in. But, he got it...which means, so did I!

We met up with Michele on Sunday and I couldn't wait to get home to put it in the nursery. It looks SO cute in there. And, in true form, we had to test it out with Magnum.

Oh, but I didn't stop there! Shortly after this I tortured him some more by giving him a shower and clipping his toenails. But, don't fear, Faithful Followers, he was handsomely rewarded with about 4 tablespoons of peanut butter and 3 Ruby Trout filet skins....AND, he got to warm himself up by the fire!

A big thanks to Michele (and her boss) for outfitting the nursery with LULU. I know our little one will love it!!

02 April 2009

Excuse Me, Can I Get a Picture of That Big 'Ole Belly??

Daniel did an incredible job taking these pictures. We had such a good time with him and his fiance Laura. I don't think there are any other photographers out there who we would feel as comfortable around. They are both truly amazing people!

We got some really great shots in our backyard.

Our peanut is only slightly larger than this one!

Daniel took us to this beautiful field of mustard flowers and got some AMAZING shots!

(My personal favorite) And, of course, no Cooper/Michelson photo shoot is complete without a shot like this!

As I have a little more time to go through all the pictures, I may find some more to post.

Coming Soon to a Theatre Near You...

Belly Shots! We got the cd tonight and are in the process of loading them onto the computer and shrinking the size so that I can post them. So, check back later for some pictures. Daniel did an AMAZING job!