Tuesday, December 29, 2009

32 1/2 weeks

I have been awful about documenting belly pictures. I'm thrilled to death about being 32 weeks pregnant. And really didn't expect to make it this far. And I love it! The baby movement is so strong that it wakes me up at night. And it's exciting to think about how much bigger this baby is already compared to Rhiannon's birth size. So, I love my pregnant belly. Just not the rest of me that is expanding in the process. Sometimes I wonder where the baby is, my belly or my butt since it seems to be a race to see which can expand faster. I think my butt is winning. Yeah.

Anyways, here are some pictures taken tonight.

And of Daddy (who keeps losing weight by the way. . . how does that happen?)

The pregnancy is still progressing well. I see the doctor weekly now and at each visit a vaginal ultrasound is performed to measure the length of my cervix and check the cerclage. My cervix has not shortened anymore since the cerclage which is great news. At 29.5 weeks (Rhiannon as born at 29.4) I had a doctor's appointment and they did a full ultrasound to measure the baby. At that time the baby was already weighing 3 lbs 5 oz. Rhiannon was 3 lbs 3 oz. Typically babies at 29 weeks are around 2 1/2 lbs so it looks like this baby will be big. Rhiannon was too thankfully. If this baby goes to term, I might not be so happy about it's big size! But it's to be expected. Russ was almost 10 lbs and I was 9 lbs 4 oz. The baby looked wonderful. However, it still covers it's face. He/she is a bashful thing.

I'm almost completely losing my mind but time seems to be going by quickly. Russ keeps reminding me to enjoy being pregnant, so I'm working on that. Rhiannon is entertaining so that's a plus. She has become much more independent and is quite the helper. She often stops playing and says "I need to go check on Mommy." She makes sure that my water jug is full and with me at all times. Although she drinks most of it. She's a joy and I'm thankful with all this time I get to spend with her in these last weeks of being an only child.

Rhiannon received a doctor's kit from Dr Amanda for Christmas so she also spends a lot of time giving me medical exams. She listens to my heart, checks my temperature and blood pressure, gives me shots and looks in my ears. Then she tells me I did a good job and she puts a sticker on me. So apparently I'm a good patient.

Here she is with her new stethoscope.

I have a nurse that comes to our house every week week to give me my progesterone shot. Thankfully I only have 4 more left. Rhiannon holds my hands during the shot and she enjoys hearing the baby's heart beat with the doppler.
So here's to 7 1/2 more weeks! Thank you all for your prayers!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Cookies

It's a tradition in my Mama's kitchen that we make cookies for Christmas. This is one of my favorite traditions but last year I missed out while at work but Rhiannon was there to help. The year before, Lawson was the helper. This year, however, Rhiannon and I both were there to help. After the year we have had with my Mama's health and my pregnancy, it was such a blessing to sit in my Mama's kitchen and enjoy the smells of my childhood home mixed with the wonderful smell of cookies and hear the sweet sounds of Christmas music and my little girl singing with her Mama and grandmother. So many times that day I just sat there and smiled because of how insanely happy I was at that very moment.

Rhiannon received this cute little apron from Aunt Linda for Christmas so she helped Momess make the cookie dough and cut the cookies. I documented the process with video and pictures from my chair.

After the cookies were baked, Rhiannon and I decorated them with sprinkles. Rhiannon calls them "sparkles" and she spent most of the time eating the "sparkles" instead of putting them on the cookies. And there is not telling how many cookies she snagged and started eating before I could grab them from her. We had so much fun.

Merry Christmas to all of you and your families. I hope you enjoy every second of this wonderful season.

A visit with Santa

Last year my sister and I took our girls to see Santa together and had the cutest pictures made of the two of them. We decided to try it again this year. It was no simple feat. I wanted to go so my mother and Russ came with me. One to push the wheelchair and one to chase our two year old. We visited the Picture People again because they have Santa there from 3 - 8 Monday - Thursday for pictures. This works out well for us because we can get pictures made of the girls alone, together and with Santa.

The photo shoot went amazingly well. Getting a two year old and almost 4 year old to look at the camera took some work but we did it. That poor photoghrapher.

Lawson loved Santa. I think she loved him so much that he was running from her by the end of the session. Rhiannon wasn't so sure. She refused to sit in his lap but decided she would stand beside him. He asked her what she wanted for Christmas and she said "TOYS!!". Then immediately said "Bye Santa" which meant "Okay, you can go now." It was funny.

Notice in the picture how Santa is holding on to her.

Lawson is such a ham. Isn't she the cutest?
Here are pictures from last year.

And pictures from this year.

Lawson is holding onto Rhiannon here. Thanks Lawson!
Oh, and this is how I roll.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A quiet two year old

Another thing I have learned, it's a bad sign when my two year old is quiet.

One Saturday, Rhiannon was playing both in the living room and room. She's a very vocal two year old. She talks to us, herself, her dolls. . . or she sings.

When she's quiet, you should worry.

On this day, we walked back to her room and found this. . .
She had pulled every article of clothing out of every drawer in her dresser. And taken all of her dress up items out of the dress up basket.


She also has a little chalk board on the side of her kitchen set. I thought, what harm could she do with white chalk? Her furniture is already white right? I didn't think about the walls. . .

Uncle Timothy caught her in the corner of her room doodling on her walls with chalk. He called me in to show me.

Mommy: "Rhiannon, what it this?" In a stern voice as I am pointing to the chalk on the wall. Rhiannon: Looks at the wall, and then back at me, and says "A bunny." And smiles.

At that point, I just laughed.

Mommy loves hair photos

As your child grows up, I think you realize how big they are getting but for me, it isn't until I looked at pictures again from last Christmas that I realized how much my little Rhiannon has changed.

I took this picture before she left for a visit with Sweet Pea and YaYa because I loved the outift. The overalls were a gift from my friend Jessica last Christmas. They are from Pottery Barn Kids and are so soft and sweet. I loved them paired with the Converse sneakers.

I also took this one of her hair!

Rhiannon's hair is now so long that when it's wet it hits her lower back. It's so curly that you can't tell how long it truly is. The curls bring me to another interesting vent. I have straight hair. Well, not entirely straight. It's incredibly thick and when air dryed it has this very strange amazon like wave that would cause you to point and laugh at me if you saw it. But not these springy cute curls. I have no idea how to handle curls. Through trial and error, I have discovered that's it's best not to brush it. I comb it when it's wet and then let it air dry. To fix it, I will sometimes spray with water to refresh the curls. But most time, I just finger comb it and stick a bow in it (and then pray that she keeps the bow in). I have only cut it once, and that was to cut her bangs last Christmas. At this point, I'm scared to cut it because of the fear that I will cut off the curls and they won't come back!

I then found this picture from last Christmas and realize how much she truly has changed. My baby is growing up!


On December 12, the Crain family hit a major milestone. Russ graduated!

To explain a little more, Russ tried college after we graduated from high school 13 years ago but at that time, well, let's just say it wasn't a good fit. Which worked well for me because that brought him to live in Dahlonega after leaving UGA. I was in college at North Georgia in Dahlonega and it was then that we started dating. While I was in my senior year, Russ started attending classes again but then stopped when his dad had a stroke in late 2002. It wasn't until we decided to start a family that he made the decision to go back to school full time. That was a little over 3 years ago. So, after 13 years, Russ graduated from North Georgia College and State University with a bachelor's degree in Finance. I think I was the happiest person there! Although, Rhiannon looks pretty happy too.

And yes, I was able to attend graduation thankfully. When all this bedrest stuff began, it was my fear that I would not be able to go. And it was so important for me to be there to support him. Russ has had such a difficult last semester with me on bedrest, caring for Rhiannon, work, and a tough semester in school, but he has worked so hard. My youngest brother, Timothy, was also graduating with his Masters in Education in the same ceremony. After getting clearance from OB, I was allowed to go.

So Russ spoke to the school and had them reserve a seat for me on the floor so that I would not have to climb bleachers (climbing stairs right now is a no-no). They were only able to reserve 3 and I figured that me Rhiannon and my brother Stephen could sit there together that way the parents could sit together and I had Stephen's help with Rhiannon.

The morning of graduation. . .

Russ had a late night with early celebrations so Stephen and I were caring for Rhiannon that morning while the graduate slept in. Rhiannon woke up at 5:30am and that was how the day started. Later on that morning, after Russ had showered, I went to get in the shower and while it was warming up, our water went out. Comletely. In the entire neighborhood. Stephen and I had not showered yet and were supposed to be leaving in an hour and a half. So, we grabbed Rhiannon and drove to my parents house. In a mad rush, we got ready and were on our way to graduation. Stephen entered the gym first and found our seats. They were easy to get to and had "Reserved Crain" taped on the backs of them. Stephen goes to sit down and this lady tells him that she has those seats saved. He tells her that they are reserved for his family and sits down. She starts fussing at him and that's when I sat down. She then starts fussing at me. I explain to her that my husband is graduating at that I had been on bedrest for 10 weeks. Because of my condition, my husband had the school reserve these seats for me. I'm not sure if she didn't believe me or if she was just psycho (I'm leaning towards the latter). She then said something about taking care of it and walked off. She came back and pointed her finger in Stephen's face and told him that he was a liar! She said she spoke to the Dean and there were no reserved seats. At this point, I'm thinking that maybe she's blind. Can she not see the signs on the chairs? Did she think that we put those signs there? At this point, the Howard tempers of me and Stephen (with a few pregnant hormones as kindling) are flaring so we are both telling this lady off. I truly can't remember ever being that mad. I chose to walk off to see a sorority sister of mine and cool off. And the lady followed me!!! I was really looking for people to take her off in the white jacket. Or me one.

But, Russ and Timothy graduated! Whew. After my camera was dropped and broken in the lobby after the ceremony, I was ready for this day to be over!

But I couldn't be more happy for my hard working husband. I'm so proud of him!